The Lewiston-Auburn area in Maine is full of unique and prominent works of public art. Despite the frequency of these public artworks, many residents still lack proper information and tools for access. Additionally, many artists and organizations still have questions about the best practices for siting future public artworks. This capstone project is a collaboration with L/A Arts and works to address this through the creation of a digital public art map, three tours, and a siting criteria rubric for future public artworks.
This report describes the goals, methodology, and process taken to create these deliverables and concludes with recommendations for future development of this project. The project began with a research phase which allowed us to identify best practices and tools for creating our three deliverables. The first of these deliverables being a digital, interactive map. This map featured pictures and unique descriptions for 58 public artworks found in the Lewiston-Auburn area and was compiled in a digital, interactive format. This was reviewed by L/AArts and community members, creating a useful tool for locating artworks throughout L/A.
Our second deliverable were three self-guided tour brochures which provided a walking route, a biking route, and a driving route. These routes were designed to help promote enjoyment and engagement with the various public artworks of L/A and featured three modes of transport to increase accessibility for people of all mobilities. This led to the creation of a walking tour focused around Lisbon Street and the mills, a biking tour which starts in Kennedy Park and follows the Auburn Riverwalk to Aniversary Park, and a Driving Tours which explores artworks on the outskirts and in the heart of Lewiston and Auburn. Each of these tours is accompanied by a vibrant tour brochure which gives descriptions and information about the featured works.
Our last deliverable was a future public art siting criteria document. After reviewing academic literature and local ordinances for public art siting, a seven category scoring criteria was designed to identify and score future public art sites. This was created to help better understand what makes a good public art installation and as a tool to limit the risk of causing displacement through public art gentrification.
We believe these three deliverables will help to increase access and enjoyment of public arts in the L/A area. We recommend that L/A Arts continues to develop and update these tools with a focus on expanding the audience which can use them and ensuring they continue to be updated.
Henderson, Julia and Goulden, Ronan, "Increasing Public Art Visibility and Access in Lewiston-Auburn" (2021). Community Engaged Research Reports. 76.