The Art in City Life Plan is Providence’s first comprehensive plan for public art. It sets a bold vision and puts in place a roadmap for the city to commission and support public art projects and residencies. Via worked closely with the City’s Department of Art, Culture + Tourism (ACT) and the newly established Art in City Life Commission to craft the plan and develop recommendations. To engage a broad range of stakeholders we developed online and intercept surveys in Spanish and English and designed and facilitated an interactive Imagine Art Here workshop attended by more than 60 artists and community stakeholders. Based on our research and extensive outreach, we developed a set of trajectories for commissioning public art, as well as administrative tools and policy recommendations that provide clear ways for ACT to make decisions about its investments in public art and memorials, prioritize limited resources and better support others wanting to commission public art in Providence.
Since approving the plan in 2018, the City has been using the plan’s recommendations to build an innovative municipal public art program that is strengthening and empowering Providence’s already rich arts ecosystem. ACT has made headway commissioning works in all four project types recommended in the plan and has incorporated many of the plan’s recommendations into the way they work. These new projects and initiatives serve the breadth of Providence’s communities, create new opportunities for artists, and support the growth of public art practice in a city rife with artists and cultural organizations eager to produce public art. Since developing the Art in City Life Plan, Via has returned to Providence to assist ACT with artist selection for a number of Public Art Residencies and Temporary Projects, as well.
Learn more about the plan.