ROCHESTER, NY (WROC) – Increasingly, Rochester is a city garnering attention for its urban art. Recently, Mayor Malik Evans’ administration issued requests for proposals to partner with organizations and artists – to get more murals and public sculptures across the city.
“Essentially, we just want to see more public art throughout the city,” says Kevin Kelly, planning manager. He hopes City Hall can team up with organizations and get more art out on the streets, helping the Arts and Creative Community Committee, also known as AC3, in this effort.
“And we have funds, money set aside specifically to fund more murals, on the sides of buildings and things throughout the city,” Kelly says, adding that it’s for other forms of art as well. art: like sculptures or playful pieces.
“Mayor Evans and the City of Rochester truly believe in the power of public art and the vitality it creates,” he says.
In all, that would be around 5-10 new pieces of art. Diversity, he says, is a priority. “Whether it’s artists of color, or LGBTQ+ artists, or artists with disabilities…” he says.
Shawn Dunwoody is co-chair of AC3. He is also an artist who has painted several murals across the city. “I want people engaged in the process of creating art to help shape their city, the world around them,” he says.
He says there are economic aspects behind creativity that need to be embraced. Once that happens… “We’ll see the Rochester we’ve always wanted and the Rochester we need,” he says.
Kelly says investing in and encouraging artists is a win-win. “So we’re all for it and want to invest more in that aspect of the local economy and in training people,” he says.
Kelly says the funding comes from a municipal program called “percentage for the arts” – which sets aside 1% of total development costs for major physical projects. You can find out more about the program here.