Wednesday, February 23, 2011

We Need Public Art in Oklahoma!

3/17/11 Update:
House Bill 1665 was passed by the House and waiting to be heard in the Senate.
Senate Bill14 passed committee, but was not heard on the floor in time, so died.

We encourage you to still contact your Senator and the Governor to let them know the Oklahoma Art in Public Places Act should continue.  HB 1665 would suspend the program for 3 years. 

See a recent Tulsa World article about the program.  Watch for more updates on the Oklahoma Arts Council's Arts Information Center:

Please speak up to your Representatives and Senators to let them know you want the Oklahoma Art in Public Places Act to continue.  Find your legislators contact information here: 

The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition supports the Oklahoma Art in Public Places Act:
  • Passage of HB 1665, which will suspend the Oklahoma Art in Public Places Act for three years, will be detrimental for our state.   Passage of SB 14 is even worse, ending the program.
  • The percent for public art is paid for from capital project budget and does not affect the General Revenue Fund or other sources of state revenue.
  • Funds spent on public art improve our communities for minimal expense and create jobs for artists, who are small business people.
  • This program is only a few years old and just beginning to complete a variety of excellent art projects all over the state.
  •  Public art enlivens our cityscapes, reflects our distinctiveness, attracts tourism and creates economic benefit.  Public art can record our community history.  All distinctive communities include public art from the Statue of Liberty to the Vietnam Memorial. 
  • Cultural travelers, who make up 81% of tourists who travel over 50 miles from home, spend 40% more money and stay 50% longer, according to a recent Travel Industry Association of American study. Oklahoma will become a more exciting destination as artists create works that reflect the identity of our state.
  •  Last year for only $50,000, three Oklahoma artists were commissioned for public projects that transformed their careers and increased their business capacity.

8.     Read more facts about the Act here or see their website:  Please act quickly as these bills will be heard in the next day. 

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