Across the country, downtowns are experiencing a renaissance of great music, art, museums, and revitalizations of historic buildings. Downtown Idaho Falls continues to engage in public art initiatives. Take a look at the vibrant art you can enjoy as a downtowner!
Wrapped in Art: Traffic Cabinets
Throughout downtown Idaho Falls, the gray traffic cabinets along Yellowstone Highway and Broadway in the downtown district have been wrapped with local artists’ artwork. Click here for the list of cabinets and artists.
This artwork was generously provided by The Art Museum of Eastern Idaho from their Permanent Collection. With the local artists’ permission, the museum coordinated the use of the artwork, along with the Idaho Falls Downtown Development’s Public Art Committee.
The final piece was to secure the funding. The CHC Foundation generously granted the project $8,500 with matching funds provided by the Idaho Falls Historic Downtown Foundation of $5,000. The Idaho Falls Magazine featured the project in this article.
Living Walls represents our commitment to incorporating art in our downtown space and supporting local artists. This project is aimed at bringing private and public walls to life. Check out this link for a Google Map of downtown Public Art
Look and Listen by Kelly Sheridan
This public art piece was completed downtown by local Idaho Falls artist, Kelly Sheridan. We partnered with the ACLU of Idaho to commission an artist to install a new mural. Kelly was selected and the mural is about communication, specifically the beauty of American Sign Language. From left to right it says: Ask, Understand, Listen and Look. Thank you also to Jeff Neiswanger, who owns the Kress Building, home to Channel Blend where this mural is installed.
Kelly Sheridan’s comment on the message and meaning of the mural:
“I hope that you can connect with the meaning of the mural, which is this: It’s sometimes hard to listen to what seems unsavory, see something that seems wrong, understand something new, and ask about something you’d rather not know. However, that’s the only way that we can grow. We can’t assume the worst intent. The world, and people, are more beautiful and forgiving than that. That’s why communication and understanding are so important.”
Idaho Falls Downtown Development has three new murals that were completed summer and fall of 2019. Thank you to the building owners of The Villa Coffeehouse, The SnakeBite Restaurant, and Willowtree Gallery for their commitment to public art in downtown Idaho Falls.
Kris Burnham’s “I love Idaho” piece will be located on The Villa Coffeehouse. Dustin Lyon’s historical depiction of downtown is on the Willowtree Gallery building and features a saturated color palette. Cherryn Wright’s “Butterflies” is located at The SnakeBite Restaurant.
ART YOU CAN SIT ON!
Hanging out downtown is a visual arts delight, thanks to “Art You Can Sit On.” This was a collaborative project with the Idaho Falls Historic Downtown Foundation, the Idaho Falls Arts Council, the City of Idaho Falls Division of Parks and Recreation, and the City Beautification Commission. There are 18 “sculptural seats”, that are placed through our downtown and there are 21 more benches placed along the River Walking paths. The seating not only allows pedestrians a resting place, but it is also a delightful art attraction. The works are visually stunning. Some capture images of the Snake River and local wildlife while others are more whimsical including a skateboard, stack of pillows, and a bench with legs and feet. For a map and more information, visit Idaho Falls Arts Council, Art You Can Sit On