The Springfield Museums have received a $13,350 grant from the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts to present Art Picnic, a public arts project designed to beautify Springfield and give local art students the chance to collaborate with established artists. Picnic tables on the Quadrangle green will be transformed into unique works of art through a selective process that is scheduled to begin later this month. By funding this program, the Community Foundation will further enhance the beauty of one of downtown Springfield’s landmarks while also providing much needed incentives to local artists and valuable experience to art students.
Phase one of the project involves a call to local artists to submit original mural designs for consideration by an advisory panel led by Heather Haskell, Director of Art Museums and Collections, Rosemary Tracey Wood, owner of Art for the Soul Gallery and Avilda Sophia Anaya-Alegria, Art Curator, Galería L'Alvilda and Cambridge College Faculty in Art and Economics. The public will have the opportunity to vote on their favorite designs via the Museums’ Facebook page. Artists whose designs are selected will receive a stipend of $1,000 to cover the cost of their time and materials. At the same time, notices will be sent to local high schools and art studios seeking student interns to assist with Art Picnic project. Students will be asked to submit a brief application along with support material like portfolio samples and recommendations. Students that are selected will also receive a stipend of $500 each. The deadline for submitting designs and intern applications is June 26, 2013.
Announcement of the winning designs and the student internships will take place on July 5. At that time, students will be matched up with an artist and introduced to the artist’s design. Work on the picnic tables will commence on July 29. For the following two weeks, visitors will be able to view the project’s progress and the interaction between the artists and students. Completion of the project is slated for August 10, when the picnic tables will be revealed to the public during a community picnic at the Springfield Museums.
Art Picnic is designed to contributing to the creative economy of Springfield by providing a vehicle for local artists to display their work while allowing local art students to expand their skills, build their resumes and feel motivated to pursue a career in the arts.
Funding for Art Picnic is provided through the Art & Soles Fund program of the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts.