Growing out of our work developing the Downtown St. Louis Public Art Plan, Via has worked with a range of cultural and civic organizations to bring a variety of projects to life in Downtown St. Louis. Each project helped advance the vision set forth in the Plan — that public art can be used to build a dense, inclusive, and culturally vibrant downtown that is a vital anchor to the St. Louis region.
In 2019, we worked with the Regional Arts Commission and Downtown STL, Inc. to site In Search of Truth by Cause Collective at three Downtown locations over three days. In Search of Truth is a giant inflatable recording studio which has traveled the world “in search of the truth.” The artists’ aim is to “represent and celebrate the world’s diverse people, cultures, and locations and capture as many definitions, representations, confessions and thoughts on ‘The Truth’ as possible.” The public could enter the booth and record their response to the prompt “The Truth is…” Via managed the project’s installation at three locations in St. Louis, including overseeing all scheduling, handling permits and logistics, and promoting the three-day event.
In 2019 – 2022, we worked with the Regional Arts Commission to produce InSITE STL, an exhibition of four temporary, site-responsive projects throughout the core of Downtown St. Louis. Via facilitated a competition to select artists based on their ideas and then managed all details of producing the projects, all sited on publicly accessible private property. The works were designed to impact how we see Downtown – from its actual physical character, to different views and sightlines, to our views and perceptions of what Downtown is and can be. The pieces included digital projections by Timothy Portlock collaborating with Tim Lane, Blaize’B Daniels, Marina Peng, Sage Dawson with Courtney Huang, and Mee Jay; illustrative window murals by Jenny Murphy; an LED sculpture by Jacob Stanley,; and a 3D printed terracotta screen wall by Van Dyck Murphy Studio.
And most recently, Via worked with Greater St. Louis, Inc. (GSL) to pilot a process through which GSL can partner with private property owners to bring more murals to Downtown. We helped manage the commissioning of Path of Orbit, a mural by artist William LaChance and painted under the leadership of veteran muralist Robert Fishbone. The mural covers the façade of a building located at the “Last Missouri Exit,” marking an unofficial threshold to Downtown with surprising color and energy.