Marshall artists push back on program designed to promote town's art scene
Art Business

Marshall artists push back on program designed to promote town’s art scene

Skip to main content New public art welcoming visitors to downtown Marshall could be part of a state arts program that supporters say will help drive economic growth in the town. (Photo: Paul Moon/The News-Record & Sentinel) A state program that aims to use public art to highlight downtown Marshall’s arts community is getting pushback from some in an unlikely corner – Marshall’s own art community. A series of meetings Oct. 22 intended to celebrate Marshall’s place as a one of seven SmART Communities in North Carolina devolved into gripe sessions, with local artists and state officials sniping at one another. Leigh Ann Wilder of the state’s arts council described the SmART Communities program as “an art-driven economic development program,” during an early evening meeting with roughly 15 Marshall property owners. Gathered inside a Main Street apartment, the crowd including a handful of Marshall-based artists listened as Wilder offered a meandering presentation that dwelled more on how the initiative has worked in Burnsville than how it could unfold in Marshall. When she told those gathered that artists had already been selected to complete public art projects for the town – with the husband and wife team of Todd Frahm […]

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