Del Paso Words & Walls Projects dedication ceremony
Art in public places.
The concept seems really simple: A graceful metal-and-wood sculpture placed squarely in a library. A vibrant mural painted on the side of a shop’s wall. A bronze statue looming over travelers at an airport.
But that’s not all public art can be, and that’s something that Shelly Willis, director for the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Commission considered when her organization teamed with the Del Paso Boulevard Partnership in an effort to bring more visual art to the north Sacramento neighborhood.
The idea, Willis knew, had to go beyond simply tacking up some pictures around the boulevard.
“I’m interested in finding ways that artists in other disciplines can bring their work into the public realm,” she says.
And so, the Del Paso Words & Walls Project was born, and in January, SMAC and the DPBP invited Sacramento poets to submit works for consideration on the subject of Del Paso Boulevard—poems inspired by their perspectives, impressions and memories of the street.
The chosen poems would then, in turn, be translated by graphic artists into visual pieces.
The resulting exhibit, the Del Paso Words & Walls Project, will feature five “monumental and site-specific” public artworks on buildings located along Del Paso Boulevard, between Arden Way and El Camino Avenue.
The project’s participating poets are Susan Kelly-DeWitt, Danny Romero, Paco Marquez, Tim Kahl and Catherine French. The graphic designers are Laura Edmisten-Matranga, Benjamin Della-Rosa, Hans Bennewitz, William Leung and Barb Hennelly.
The project, currently still in its final stages of completion, will be unveiled Saturday, October 12, at the Sacramento Temporary Contemporary gallery, and while it’s currently planned as a temporary installation, Willis says that ideally it will evolve into a permanent collection.
“I hope the Del Paso businesses like [the art] so much that they’ll keep them up,” she says. Reception is on Saturday, October 12, from 5 to 7 p.m. 1616 Del Paso Boulevard, www.sacmetro arts.org/poetwall.html.