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Arts council picks ArtPop works for outdoor display

Date: April 08, 2016


“Art has no boundaries,” said Jim Sparrow, president and chief executive of the arts council. “By partnering with out of home advertising, we can take art to travelers on public highways."


Arts council picks ArtPop works for outdoor display

Visual art came out of the gallery and went up in the air Monday when artwork appeared on three billboards between Akron Drive and Vargrave Street along U.S. 52.

Officials at the Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County announced Wednesday the names of artworks and artists that have been selected for its first ArtPop project, which will run throughout the year: “Sorcerer,” by Owens Daniel; “Nature by Design,” by Kelly Keegan; “Headspace,” by Jennifer McCormick; “Cylinders 7,” by Kevin Marion; and “Fall Feeding,” by Timothy Porter. Their mediums include CT scan, watercolor, pastel and digital photography.

The artworks by McCormick, Keegan and Daniel are the ones currently on display.

The arts council is partnering with ArtPopStreetGallery of Charlotte, the creator of the program, and the Greensboro Division of Fairway Outdoor Advertising.

The arts council pays for the creation of the artwork on vinyl that goes up on the billboards, and Fairway is contributing the outdoor advertising space.

“We were really happy with the quality of the selections for the first year. It was really, really hard to choose,” said Susan Morris, the arts council’s director of community engagement.

Photographs of the original artwork are printed on 14-by-48-foot vinyl sheets and displayed on billboards on major arteries in a 13-county region as the space becomes available.

The first ArtPop program was launched in Charlotte in 2014 when the works of 20 local artists were displayed on donated billboard space. ArtPop is now on the streets of nine other cities across the U.S., with at least 20 more expected to participate in 2016.

“Art has no boundaries,” said Jim Sparrow, president and chief executive of the arts council. “By partnering with Fairway Outdoor Advertising, we can take art to travelers on public highways. Our local artists will delight countless motorists each day with amazing works of art as they go to and from work or go about other daily activities. The works range from abstract and provocative to representational and sublime. We know they will be a real treat for travelers.”

There were 43 submissions, and works were chosen through a juried process chaired by Cheryl Lindsay, Hanesbrands and arts council board member. Other members of the panel were Saul Guinto Salinas, Que Pasa Media Network; Rosa Otero, Salem College Art Department; Tammy Evans, Winston-Salem State University, Department of Art + Visual Studies; Will Taylor, Visual Arts Department at UNC School of the Arts; Anu Williams, Humanities, Communication, and Fine Arts department at Forsyth Technical Community College; and John Pickel, Visual Art Department, Wake Forest University.

Artists who reside in Forsyth, Stokes, Davidson, Surry, Davie and Yadkin counties are eligible to participate.

“The great thing about the project is that it has the potential for three-dimensional art,” Morris said. “We hope next year that people will submit more 3-D art — like jewelry and glass art, sculpture, fiber, furniture.

“Some of the furniture pieces that come out of Sawtooth are awesome.”

A pre-call to artists will go out in November with a February deadline to submit, Morris said. Those who submitted but were not selected may resubmit in subsequent years. Those who are selected are not eligible to be selected again for at least three years.

Information and application guidelines can be found at

“The artists don’t get paid, but they will get a miniversion of their billboards — about 10 inches wide and 7 inches tall,” Morris said.

And they get some pretty good free advertising.

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