When I first heard about the local Jacksonville, Fl. program called Art in Public Places, I was very excited.  Since I’m a creative person who enjoys various aspects of the arts, I really thought this program could give my city some help; since it doesn’t have much else to offer. But as I did my research, I was very disappointed.

It turns out that basically the art is very limited with this program. Although art work has been set up in public places like the public libraries and the local baseball grounds, it still doesn’t seem like enough exposure for the city. I was very much expecting the program to be more hands on, particularly with younger children who are artistic and creative. There are a lot of creative youth in our city, but sometimes they don’t have the proper resources to help with developing their skills. But the children of today are out future of tomorrow.

I feel like the program needs to be revamped. It would be really nice if, as part of the program they got younger kids to participate and then have their artwork displayed. I feel like that would be inspiring to the younger generation. As of now, some of the artwork they have up , it’s very stiff, not lively enough to catch the attention of a younger audience. Also if they could put up more artwork in places around the city that aren’t as lively. Having  bright and inspiring artwork in places where it’s least expected might do something to bring a better spirit to some local neighborhoods.

The whole point of the program was to provide an accessible location for artwork where anyone would have access to it. There are a lot of people who have a love for art, but may not have the proper environment or access to experience it in its fullness. Art work can do wonders for those who see it and really appreciate it for more than just what it is on the surface. For some people it may seem a painting is simply a painting, but for others who understand the true nature of creativity,  it can be something inspiring. 

I really hope that this program eventually gets more involved with the younger generation. It would be something positive and productive for them to be involved in. And it would also help liven up our city a little as well, if we had more youthful artwork on display around town. I also think it would be a better way to help the younger generation give back to their local neighborhoods as well.

 Below are some pieces around Jacksonville from “Art in Public Places”

Above: Tillie K. Fowler memorial in Riverside area

Above: found outside the downtown library

I just really wish Jacksonville had more to offer with the arts around the city. With artwork like what’s displayed above; I feel this city could do a lot better. There’s nothing exciting about either of these pieces, or anything else I’ve seen on display. Art isn’t just important when it comes to inspiring youth and education, but just in general. It can say a whole lot about the city’s culture.

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About Alex McClain

Writing is a gift of mine that I enjoy sharing with others. What I love more than writing is the actual story, finding others who share the same passion as I do and discovering a certain creative energy in others. This is what keeps me inspired. Finding these people and telling their stories. I'm a senior at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, fl. I'm a communications major with a concentration in print journalism. If you're interested in contacting me for any freelance work or you're interested in me writing about you for my blog email me at alexandra_mcclain1989@yahoo.com

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