In celebration of our 20th anniversary, we are stitching together 4 communities with 7 interactive, site-specific public art installations this June through September via Create Community: Spaces for Discovery.
The installations focus on unique spaces and places that are hallmarks of Saugatuck, Douglas, Holland, and Fennville. Designed by artists Jeremy Barnett and Jason Maracani, every location uses “everyday objects,” many that are found in our local environments, to form arches, seating areas, sculptures, boats, windows, and more.
The Saugatuck Center for the Arts
Coghlin Park, Saugatuck
Saugatuck-Douglas History Museum, Saugatuck
Wade’s Bayou, Douglas
Corner of West Main St + South Maple St, Fennville
Crane’s Orchard, Fennville
Outdoor Discovery Center, Holland
Hear it from the Artists
Why mark a milestone anniversary with public installations? SCA Executive Director Kristin Armstrong says that deliberately placing art in public sites makes the installations available to everyone – a form of collective community expression. “Public art is a reflection of how we see the world. It can be part of our public history, part of our evolving culture and our collective memory. It can reflect and reveal us – our values, what’s important to us, what we love.”
In fact, Spaces for Discovery was designed with the concept of “art for all” at its core. “It’s important to us to use materials that are accessible to anyone,” says Jason, a New York-based Installation Artist, Teacher, and Theatrical Production Designer. “We find materials at the hardware store that require nothing more than a drill and a paintbrush… then we string them together. Anyone can do this.”
Barnett, an Installation Artist, Scenic Designer, and Theater Professor at Oakland University, describes the sculptures as “physicalizing the play of a child.” Jeremy finds inspiration from watching his children play in these spaces. “If my children are skipping across the field, then there’s a good chance that the sculpture is going to be following in their footsteps,” he says.
Every piece of the Spaces for Discovery installation was designed with sustainability and preservation in mind. While the sculptures are temporary, the sites and the environments that host them are not. Every location is designed with a Leave No Trace philosophy. In addition, the materials that are used for this installation will be repurposed into cold frames, garden beds, and other projects around the communities.
The official opening celebration for Spaces for Discovery is on June 17 + 18 at the annual Jump Into Summer party at the SCA. Guests will have the opportunity to interact with the exhibition, learn more, and interact with the artists who will be on site. In addition to the exhibition opening, Jump Into Summer also features a FREE concert with local bands and headlining Michigan-Natives, The Accidentals; plus other family-friendly events and activities.
Creating Community: Spaces for Discovery is the first installation of this size and scale the SCA has coordinated. This is only made possible through the generous support of sponsors including:
Bill Underdown + Tammy Kerr at Century 21 Affiliated
Jeff Antaya + Peter Rosenfeld | Andy Knight + Beau Gratzer | Mary Kay + Mark Baker | Gina + Kevin Bognar | Richard Heriford + Guy Ballard | Ken Altman | Tim Straker + John Cannarsa | Michigan Arts & Cultural Council | National Endowment for the Arts.