City looks for ways to maintain public art

    Philadelphia has more public art than any city in the country, but it has a hard time keeping them in good repair. That’s according to a new report written for the city’s Office of Arts and Culture. The city is acknowledging that it lacks an art strategy.

    Philadelphia has more public art than any city in the country, but it has a hard time keeping them in good repair. That’s according to a new report written for the city’s Office of Arts and Culture. The city is acknowledging that it lacks an art strategy.

    Listen:
    [audio: 091014pcpublicart.mp3]

    There are many organizations in the city overseeing public art – most prominently the Mural Arts Program, the Fairmount Park Art Association, and the Redevelopment Authority. The report on public art shows they are not well coordinated.

    The report bu PennPraxis at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Design, was given to Gary Steuer. Steuer recently re-opened the city’s Office of Arts and Culture. He says entities like the Mural Arts Program have to figure out how to maintain the volume of their 25-year output.

    Steuer: It’s talked about that they’ve made 3000 murals, but many have gone away. Can they all be maintained in perpetuity, how can they get the resources to paint over them when the time comes? These are difficult challenges.

    Steuer says once public art projects are created, there is not a clear process nor resources to maintain them.

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