VR Bengaluru commissioned me to conceptualise a temporary site-specific live public art installation titled ‘Art, I Love You’ on the occasion of World Art Day 2018. This international event led by IAA-UNESCO takes place on April 15th, Leonardo Da Vinci’s birthday, and celebrates fine arts and promotes awareness of creative activity worldwide.
So what is public art exactly?
Public art is art in public spaces. I’m not just talking about larger than life bronze statues, stone sculptures and a queen riding a horse in a park. Today, public art comes in all kinds of forms, shapes and sizes – and is either temporary or permanent. It includes murals, memorials, community art, digital media, sculpture, landscaping, architectural work, and even performances and festivals. It can be created in response to a place and community in which it resides.
It often interprets the history of the place, its people, and perhaps addresses a social or environmental issue. The work may be created in collaboration with the community, reflecting the ideas and values of those for whom it’s created.
Being public, the art is free and accessible to everyone. Public art creates a heightened awareness in the viewer of the site of the people and the broader context of what’s around them. Today, viewers may capture a photo of the public art on their smartphone and share the work and the experience with others, extending the reach of public art beyond the site.
Whatever the form, public art instills meaning—a greater sense of identity and understandings of where we live, work, and visit—creating memorable experiences for all. I thank VR Bengaluru for helping create these unique experiences in an increasingly digital world.