Arts DEVOté

Survey says! The people have spoken. Well, 313 of them have. The results of the mysterious Chico Public Art Survey are now available online at

Organized by a group of local artists/arts advocates and implemented by Daniel Donnelly and Butte College Art & Design, the survey was conducted to help the Arts Commission get an idea of what the community and local arts folks think of public art and the public art process. Of the 313 who took part, 219 indicated they were involved in the arts directly, 19 were media (but not Arts DEVOté—the arts folks at the CN&R never received notice of the survey), 90 said that they were a “local business owner/manager” and four people skipped the question.

Most folks dug the majority of the public art—the faves were the Taylor Hall column murals (154 “strongly likes” and 67 “likes”), the downtown art benches (122; 128) and the parking structure murals (105; 132). The much-maligned “Silver Plow” (pictured) on Park Avenue got the lowest marks (73 “dislikes” and 98 “strongly dislikes”). But that could have as much to do with the cost as any aesthetic considerations. At $120K, the plow cost more than double the three faves combined. (A.D. doesn’t care what anyone thinks—those big rocks are for real!)

The rest of the questions dealt with city procedures and money issues, and it’s probably not surprising many people don’t know much about the public arts process (the majority of the “don’t know” responses fell in those questions). And when it comes to money, people prefer to spend less on large projects and marketing and more on multiple, “cost-effective” smaller projects.

But I’m still hungry A.D. is fairly satisfied with the survey, though he isn’t impressed by the low number of respondents. So, just for giggles, let us keep this mother rolling with the first ever Arts DEVOté Addendum to the Chico Public Art Survey … Survey! It’s easy. Fill out the questionnaire below and mail or hand deliver it to the CN&R, 353 E. Second St., Chico, CA 95928 (c/o Arts DEVOté), or respond via e-mail to <script type="text/javascript" language="javascript"> </script> by noon Wed., April 25 (you have less than a week), and look for the results in this column on May 3.

First , check the box that applies:

☐ I do art(make, sell, hang, choose)
☐ I just dig art
☐ I just might know a guy named Art

Next , for each of the following, respond with (1) for “yes” (2) for “not sure” or (3) for “no.” (Plus, fill in the blanks where prompted.)

1. In general, I am satisfied with the kinds of public art found in Chico (whether funded by the city or not).

2. My favorite piece of public art in Chico is _______________________. My least favorite is_____________________________________.

3. Enough money is being spent in Chico on public art (TOT funds, RDA funds, whatever).

4. I am comfortable with the current public art selection process.

5. Chico is one of the top-10 arts towns in the country.

6. The city should be spending money on marketing Chico as an arts tourist destination.

7. Briefly list the bad and good of the state of Chico’s arts (use a separate sheet please, but just one, ya freakin’ windbag!)