Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Community Vision for Public Art Forum Scheduled Thursday, March 29

The Town of Clayton is exploring public art opportunities throughout the community and seeks input from the public. A Community Vision for Public Art Forum will take place on Thursday, March 29th from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. in the Clayton Center, with refreshments beginning at 6:00 pm.

“The input received from this community forum will help shape a planning document to be used in developing future public art projects in the Town of Clayton,” according to Project Coordinator, Bruce Naegelen. It is envisioned that this project will act as a springboard for a broad-scale public art master plan for the Town of Clayton as well as strengthen the community’s understanding of public art. The visioning is a first step in the development of a master plan, a process which can take several years.

The forum is open to the public and will include a brief slide presentation on public art by consultant Laura Coats of Morrisville, NC. There will be several activities during which participants will be able to provide input on public art opportunities throughout Clayton.

Mayor Jody McLeod said “As a goal of the Town Council, this project will go a long way toward developing a direction for a public arts policy and program development for the town of Clayton.” Mayor McLeod added, “We’re grateful for the continued support of the North Carolina Arts Council and the N.C. General Assembly in our community and for this project in particular.” Clayton Visual Arts is also contributing monetary resources to the project.

In July, 2006 The Town of Clayton was awarded $3,000.00 from the North Carolina Arts Council for the Community Vision for Public Art Project. In October, the Public Art Planning Committee began working with Ms. Coats, to help develop a public art plan for Clayton.

The Clayton Public Art Planning Committee is comprised of Jody McLeod, Mayor, Town of Clayton and owner, Annie V’s Floral Company; Lyn Austin, President, Clayton Cultural Arts Foundation; Margaret Ritchie, Chairman of Clayton Visual Arts; Editor of the Clayton News-Star, and part-time artist; Joyce Blackley, President, Clayton Downtown Development Association and owner, Blackley Printing Company. Jessica Meadows, Executive Director, Johnston County Arts Council. Heidi Stump, Director, Clayton Center and former cultural arts director for the Town of Cary; Also on the committee are Clayton artists Kelly Sari, whose work includes the Town Mural on the east side of the Barbour Building in downtown Clayton; Walter Day and Cheryl McCardle and Leslie Barranco, a past chair of the Clayton Area Chamber of Commerce and owner of Pancho’s International Foods. Clayton Downtown Development Coordinator Bruce Naegelen, is the project coordinator and grant administrator.

For more information on the Community Vision for Public Art Project, contact Bruce Naegelen at 553-1545 or bnaegelen@townofclaytonnc.org.

The North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources, awards grant money each year to provide diverse arts experiences for citizens in all 100 counties of North Carolina. To be eligible for Arts Council funds, organizations must produce programs of artistic merit that encourage community involvement. Grants require that matching funds be raised by the applicant organization.

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