Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Public Art Diplomacy

Two separate pieces today point up the diplomatic skills it takes for artists to navigate public art commissions. At Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, the solution involved changing the site for Jonathan Borofsky's "Walking to the Sky" (which was installed in Rockefeller Center a couple years back), but also included a more general decision by the school to "develop a public art policy, create a public art committee that includes students and community members, and propose a series of campus forums to guide the selection and placement of public art." And NPR has the latest on Christo and Jeanne-Claude's next project -- a plan to suspend panels of fabric over sections of the Arkansas River. A group called Rags Over the Arkansas River (or ROAR) has apparently started a petition to block the project. The smart money's on Christo and Jeanne-Claude, however.