50 States of Public Art: Public Art in Fayetteville, Arkansas

Public art is everywhere, and this is the season for getting out and viewing it. Which is why I’ve started using Wednesdays on Caterpickles to highlight public art projects happening now in various parts of the country. 

Obviously, The Eleven-Year-Old and I can’t visit all these places in person, so we’d love to know if you have. Send us your photos or leave us a comment telling us what you saw and what you thought about it. Or if you’d like us to hunt down some public art near you, just leave a note in the comments and we’ll happily see what we can find. 

With that, let’s take a quick (virtual) trip to Fayetteville, Arkansas. 

The Public Art of Fayetteville, Arkansas

Jeffi O'Kane's 2014 storm drain mural "Let's Keep It Clean" shows two fancy fish splashing about on the sidewalk under the words "Let's Keep It Clean." Under the drain are the words "Drains to Creek".

Storm drain mural by Jeffi O’Kane. Photo by Stephen Ironside.

Title: Let’s Keep It Clean, 2014

Artist: Jeffi O’Kane

Location: Spring Street and Church Ave

Photo Source: Stephen Ironside, via the Fayetteville Interactive Public Art Map

Associated Public Art Project:

Created in 2007, the Fayetteville Arts Council has spent the past 11 years spearheading a number of arts projects to both enrich Fayetteville’s public spaces and increase community engagement. Last summer’s Green Candy Art Auction, which the Arts Council developed in cooperation with Just Kids, prompted a community-wide conversation about waste and sustainability issues. Similarly, Upstream Art, Fayetteville’s storm drain mural project sponsored by the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture, both beautifies Fayetteville’s public spaces and raises awareness about the importance of conserving the town’s water resources.

Of course, like many other towns across the U.S., Fayetteville also uses public art to brighten its buildings, public parks, bike racks, and utility boxes.

Want to see it yourself?

Fayetteville makes it really easy for local residents and visitors to find its public art. They’ve created a wonderful interactive map to the various art works around town.

Next time you’re in Fayetteville, take a few minutes and look around. I bet you’ll spot something surprising. When you do, we’d love to hear about it here on Caterpickles or Twitter (@shalahowell).

Happy public art hunting!

Related Links:

About Shala Howell

I spent two decades helping companies like Bell Labs, Juniper Networks, and a genetic testing company that was later acquired by CVS translate some of the world’s most complicated concepts into actionable, understandable English. Now I'm working on a much harder problem -- fostering children’s curiosity and engagement in the scientific, artistic, and linguistic world that surrounds them. The first book in my Caterpickles Parenting Series, What’s That, Mom?, focuses on how to use public art to nurture children’s curiosity in the world around them. My next book will focus on science, and how parents without a science degree can answer their curious child's questions without enrolling in a college level refresher course. In the meantime, you can find me blogging about life with a very curious Eleven-Year-Old at Caterpickles.com, chatting about books and the writing life at BostonWriters.blog, and tweeting about books, writing, science, & things that make me smile at @shalahowell.
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