What We Value
What is public art? Public art is artwork in the public realm -- those places that are open and accessible to the public -- and refers to original works of art in any artistic medium, permanent or temporary, a single event or piece, a series of installations or events, or part of an ongoing process enhanced over time. The non-profit Association for Public Art defines public art as art that can “express community values, enhance our environment, transform a landscape, heighten our awareness, or question our assumptions. Placed in public sites, this art is there for everyone, a form of collective community expression.” Public art is important because it defines who we are as a community and illustrates what we value. The City of Lafayette recognizes this, and through the work of the Public Art Committee (PAC) ensures that public art is a priority for the community.
Many residents have asked about how the PAC may support community-based artistic expressions that respond to current events, such as the movement toward social justice and racial equity and the experience of the COVID pandemic. At this time the PAC has been unable to meet and proceed with its work with the shelter-in-place orders in effect. As soon as its public meetings can be held once again, the PAC will hold a public meeting to discuss possibilities for community engagement which may include an exhibition at the Lafayette Library and Learning Center (LLLC) Art Gallery and a community project.
One of the PAC's main directives is to manage rotating exhibitions in the LLLC Art Gallery. The PAC intends to create a group show for exhibition in the LLLC Art Gallery composed of works that reflect the community's response to current socio-political events. Once meetings resume, a detailed Call for Artists will be posted.
The PAC also intends to organize a community project, perhaps a temporary event, to create an opportunity for the expression of community thoughts and feelings that would then be memorialized in a unique work of permanent art and added to the city's public art collection.
Community members inquiring about PAC support for community art projects on private property are asked to review the city's website for information regarding ordinances, like the sign ordinance, that may apply.
Please send any additional suggestions to Staff Liaison Jenny Rosen.