The Downtown Garner Association is pleased to present Art Around Town, a community driven public art project that uses painting to illustrate community and natural beauty and bring joy, healing, and civic engagement.

The original concept for Art Around Town was proposed by Lorie Clark, Cultural Arts & Events Manager for the Town of Garner at the Garner Performing Arts Center.  In partnership with the Downtown Garner Association, Clark wants to create an opportunity for artists from all levels of mastery and different walks of life to create art that would uplift and bring the community together during a challenging time.

Since March, the DGA Arts Committee has been working with Clark and community artists to bring the project to life.  Following a call for artists in May, selected artists received materials and stipends to paint concepts inspired by Garner’s natural beauty and community values.  The artists has one month to paint a 3’x4′ plywood canvas, which was then sealed for outdoor display.

This year’s exhibit features 23 canvases painted by artists from Garner and Raleigh on display from mid August through November.  The artwork is displayed outdoors in Downtown Garner and at select park locations for 24/7 viewing on a walkable loop. Coming out of a year of quarantining and isolation, the Downtown Garner Association wanted to create an exhibit that could be accessible to all despite any COVID restrictions.

“Public art is a priority in our economic development strategy for Downtown Garner,” said Mari Howe, Downtown Development Manager for the Town of Garner. “The Downtown Garner Association knows the power of art to create a sense of community, to empower people, and to inspire pride in Garner.  We wanted to find a way to support artists and raise awareness of Garner’s arts community. Art Around Town has been a great pilot program for doing both of those things.”

At the end of the exhibit, the Downtown Garner Association will auction the artwork, with 75% of the profit going to the original artist.  The auction will take place online in late November – more details coming soon!

For more information about Art Around Town, please contact Mari Howe at mhowe@garnernc.gov.