Where do you find public art? Do you see it every day, in murals in your neighborhood or an art installation on your campus? Have you traveled to visit destinations like Mount Rushmore or Cloud Gate in Chicago’s Millennium Park?
There is a new tool to help you find public art— the Public Art Archive™, a data-rich, online catalogue of public art throughout the U.S. and Canada put together by the Western States Arts Federation (WESTAF). WESTAF is a regional arts service organization dedicated to the creative development and preservation of the arts, with an emphasis on technology. While the organization primarily serves the 13 states that make up its membership, WESTAF impacts the entire country through their new technology tools designed for the creative industries.
Launched in 2009, the archive is a free resource that allows a broad range of users to explore public art in their communities. Their extensive, standardized data includes items such as images of the public artwork at different stages of the project, documents with artists’ statements, audio of artist interviews, and video of the piece’s installation. The archive also boasts a mobile site that grants visitors easy access to the database, including a geo-location feature to immediately find artworks near you. With 100 collections catalogued to date, WESTAF continues to accept content submissions to the archive.