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Public Arts May Be Under Attack!!

http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/articles/index.cfm?id=54146§ion=homepagepublic art.jpg

In an attempt to beautify the city, it has been proposed to cut the Public Arts Commission within the city council. I think all of the uncleaned bird droppings will add a new dimension to the art in Canal Park, don't you?


Well, if the city's idea of maintaining public art is to surround sculptures with ugly pipe barriers, I think we can do without it.

agreed - the pipes are worse than the pathetic chains. Donny, take the pipes down please.

I want to create a piece of art where I go to the homes of people who are strongly against public arts funding, and photograph their decor.

All I need is a grant.

as soon as we can figure out how to keep touristas from suing the city for their own stupid clumsiness, then we can take the chains down.

there are those who'd say that we don't need public arts...we need jobs and economic growth to get more people to come to duluth...the problem with that logic is that you can lure all the people you want to this city, but if it looks like a dump, people (including the tourists) aren't going to want to stay (move, spend money, etc...) here.

hey, where's that fish spitting anyway?

At least the guy is not spouting

The people have spoken -- ok it wasn't overwhelming, it's not like Donny has a mandate, but Donny's platform of making this a city where the arts is supported by the city govt resonated with people. For the city to withdraw its support for public arts so soon after the election is quite disturbing. I hope it gets voted down. I mean, do we want Duluth to look like Superior, which has no public art that I know about, except for that glorious view west across the Bay. Russ Stewart, a friend of mine, yes, is dead wrong on this one, and I am glad to see him ride off into the sunset, off City Council, if he's going to make these kinds of resolutions that will save money, but at the same time, lessen my quality of life as a resident of Duluth who appreciates public art.

Which begs the question: If you had to cut city services, which services would you cut?

I, and two other PDD regulars, happen to be on the Public Arts Commission. The issues surrounding the Fountain of the Wind have been with the commission for a very, very long time. In the last several months, while working with other city offices, solutions regarding aesthetics and interactivity have been addressed to meet the city and the commissions satisfaction. If Tomasz is around, he'd be much better at explaining the situation since he has done an incredible amount of work on it.

Regarding the bollards and the unfriendly signage, the city put them up and soon that will change.

Furthermore (and its seems so simple) if you want to do something about it, join the Duluth Public Arts Commission; six vacancies, three year terms, meets once a month.

If you really want to support the art, volunteer to clean them up, chase away the bums urinating on them, etc. The PAC did a study on the pieces a few years ago and the art was pretty beat up.

Chasing bums not recommended.

In response to JJLee's comment, I applied to be on the commision about 6 months ago and never heard anything. I have absolutely no artistic ability of my own but I try to support the local artists if I can.

You don't need to be artistic to be on the commission, just the desire to throw money at people who may or may not have any artistic ability either.

If the said bum is tinkling on Green Bear chasing is in order, unless he is brandishing a broken bottle of Mad Dog. at you.

Seriously, did the plan to clean up of the art ever happen? I know there was a thought to plant some prickly plants around some of them to keep certain people away without resorting to chains.

prickly plants??? Sounds a little wussy to me. What about some good old fashioned junkyard dogs? That would keep those stupid Minneappolinos from climbing into the fountains.

JJLee said: Furthermore (and its seems so simple) if you want to do something about it, join the Duluth Public Arts Commission; six vacancies, three year terms, meets once a month.

...and you can meet some pretty nice people too I say.

nbayuk, I didn't hear back for a very long time either.
Keep your ear to the phone .. we may be calling.

Regarding the original post, the Public Arts Commission cleans and maintains city sculpture with money from the tourism tax (about $39,000 this year), which would not be affected by the council's vote.

The most recent "public art" approved by the commission was the terrazzo floor leading into the DECC.

The next most recent was putting sculptures in the common area of the Technology Village.

Much of the sculpture around town was paid for by the Department of Transportation when they built the I-35 extension through town.

Yo, I'd like you to meet my associate, Vinny.

Me an' Vinny, we like art, but we don't like to PAY for it. So we took a vote, all democratic like, on the up an' up. We decided that you should buy us each some art. I was hoping for somethin' with fins, like maybe a '57 Chevy. Vinnie's tastes are more sophisticated - he likes German sports cars and Eyetalian motorsickles.

What? We voted. It was democratic. It will beautify the city. Its for the children.

Now Vinny is a patient man. He understands that a man must often wait for good quality art. We have graciously decided to give you until April 15th to pay up.

An' if you don't pay up, you get a chance to meet our other associates, Mr. Tire Iron and Mr. Glock.

Respectfully Yours,

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