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Hello Spring!

Spring Flowers Mural 83

Your Art Here is pleased to announce the hanging of a new billboard at N. 6th and Walnut Avenue in Bloomington, IN. The billboard, which celebrates spring with a buoyant display of flowers, will be on display through the summer.

The billboard’s design was put together by Pinnacle School art teacher Josh Hoering with his K-12 art students over the 2012-13 school year. From November of 2012 to February 2013, Pinnacle elementary and middle school art students created the compositions, working from photographs or from the imagination, starting with pencil sketches which were then filled in with paint; while Pinnacle high school students contributed the Hello Spring lettering, took photographs of the resultant drawings and then helped compose the final billboard layout using InDesign software.

Hello Spring is the product of a curriculum devised by Hoering which introduced students to the work of famous artists’ depictions of nature—flowers in particular—through art history. By studying the different approaches artists have taken to represent nature—from Georgia O’Keeffe’s lusciously abstracted large-scale flowers, to Vincent Van Gogh’s expressive sunflowers, to Andy Warhol’s flat and bold graphic style—Pinnacle students were encouraged to experiment with their own unique styles in portraying the chosen subject, ranging from more literal depictions, to art historical homages, to completely abstract compositions. The process was inspiring and enjoyable for all; Hoering recalls that “the students wanted to keep working on their flowers, and they wanted to make more.”

What is remarkable to see in the final design of the billboard is the stunning variety and range of flower paintings that were produced: some incorporated other wildlife in their compositions, such as butterflies, bees and spiders; some students chose the simplest of designs comprising a single flower against a stark background; some chose to work with a minimum of colors, others with an extensive palette; some worked with great detail and realism, while others chose a more expressionistic route. During these lush spring and summer months the billboard will offer Bloomington audiences a celebration of the season, a testament not only to the diversity of nature, but to the many forms of creativity that draw inspiration from our environment.

This billboard is dedicated to the memory of Sophia Travis, Your Art Here treasurer and great supporter of the arts and the community in Bloomington. In her years of service to Your Art Here, Sophia’s favorite billboard projects always included collaboration with the Bloomington community and grade school students, such as the Billboard Generation projects, so we feel this billboard is a fitting tribute to Sophia. We are honored to present this billboard to honor Sophia’s memory and her steadfast support of Your Art Here and the arts in Bloomington.

Portrait (DNA) by Christopher Serra

Your Art Here is pleased to announce the hanging of a new artist billboard located at N. 6th St and Walnut Avenue in Bloomington, IN. The billboard will be on display for the fall semester.

The billboard, designed by Boston-based illustrator Christopher Serra, pictures a map of the United States sectioned into a series of numbered columns and bands of color–representing a stylized version of a DNA autoradiograph. Presented in a public space usually reserved for advertising, this image will undoubtedly stir up questions in the viewer, but not ones that are easily resolved: What does it mean for the US to be represented as a DNA map? What constitutes the DNA–the cultural, ethnic, political make-up–of the US? For viewers who are unfamiliar with visual representations of DNA analysis, it may lead to other questions: Why would the US be divided into neat numbered rows? What could the colors signify? During the upcoming fall election season, these questions could potentially become more loaded, and viewers might respond to the image differently according to their political orientation. It is not the intent of this billboard to provide answers, solutions or clear-cut messages, but rather to provoke–via an ambiguous incorporation of geography and genome–questions and introspections.

Christopher Serra grew up in the Boston area. He is a graduate of Massachusetts College of Art. Some of his clients include: The New York Times, Harper’s, The L.A. Times, The Wall Street Journal, Newsday, The Progressive and The Nation. His work was included in The Society of Illustrators 48th Annual Show.

Your Art Here is an Indiana-based non-profit public art organization created to provide local communities with an opportunity to engage in visual, public dialogue through the use of billboards and other public spaces. Our mission is to extend visual expression beyond traditional museum and gallery spaces in order to create a public venue where art and ideas can be expressed freely.

Bienvenidos a Bloomington

Artist Rogelio Gutierrez, May 2011 Herron School of Art and Design Master of Fine Arts in Visual Art and Public life candidate, presents a series of public works throughout the cities of Indianapolis and Bloomington. These works include six billboards (five in Indianapolis and one in Bloomington, made available by Clear Channel and and a mural in the Near West neighborhood of Indianapolis. Each work reads the Spanish phrase Bienvenidos a Indianapolis (Bloomington), which translates to welcome to Indianapolis (Bloomington) in English. The imagery, reminiscent of a nostalgic post card, consists of a sprawling cactus (or nopal), an iconic symbol of Mexico and its culture.

Rogelio, a first generation Mexican-American, hails from California. These public works are meant not only to act as a metaphor for his parents’ struggles to establish a life in the United States, as well as his own transition from life in California to life in the Midwest; but also as a welcoming beacon to the ever increasing Latino/a population in the city Indianapolis and the state of Indiana in general. It is the artist’s intention to attempt to bridge the gap between this population and the general population.

These public works coincide with Rogelio’s MFA thesis exhibition that will take place throughout the month of May in Herron School of Art and Design’s main gallery

Billboard Locations 1) Indianapolis Cultural Trail, 888 Massachusetts Ave., Indianapolis, IN 2) Indianapolis Cultural Trail, 922 Massachusetts Ave., Indianapolis, IN 3) Near 1685 W. Washington St., between Reichwein and Richland Streets heading West (exiting downtown). 4) Near 1685 W. Washington St., between Reichwein and Richland Streets heading West (entering downtown). 5) Near 1185 E. Michigan St., on the corner of E. Michigan and E. Dorman St. (entering downtown). 6) At the corner of E. 6th and N. Walnut, on the square in downtown Bloomington, IN

Mural Location

La Frontera (one of the first Mexican tiendas in Indianapolis) 2401 W. Washington St., Indianapolis

Bienvenidos A Indianpolis MFA Thesis Exhibition

Opening Reception: May 5th (Cinco de Mayo), 5PM-9PM Eleanor Prest Reese and Robert B. Berkshire Galleries, Herron School of Art and Design, 735 W. New York St., Indianapolis, IN

Exhibition continues through May 26th. Gallery hours are: Monday 10AM-5PM, Tuesday 10AM-5PM, Wednesday 10AM-8PM, Thursday 10AM-5PM, Friday 10AM-5PM, Saturday 10AM-5PM, and Sunday CLOSED


Forgotten and Future Landscapes

The School of Fine Arts (SoFA) Gallery at Indiana University, Your Art Here, and ArtsWeek are proud to present Forgotten and Future Landscapes. This exhibition consists of four artists whose work will be displayed on billboards in various locations in Bloomington, IN. Works will be on display the entire month of February. Locations of the billboards will be announced at a later date.

Forgotten and Future Landscapes features billboard images by Megan Abajian, Sage Dawson, Shelley Given, and Max Heller. The landscape is an obvious barometer of environmental health and these projects address the idea of landscape in our immediate surroundings. Proposals were solicited from artists through out the region and were selected by Betsy Stirratt, Director of the SoFA Gallery, and Martha MacLeish, Assistant Professor of Fine Arts and Indiana University. Megan Abajian and Shelly Given are both Bloomington residents; Sage Dawson is from Springfield, MO and Max Heller is from Charlotte, NC.

Your Art Here is an Indiana-based non-profit public art organization created to provide local communities with an opportunity to engage in visual, public dialogue through the use of billboards and other public spaces. Their mission is to extend visual expression beyond traditional museum and gallery spaces in order to create a public venue where art and ideas can be expressed freely.

This project was funded by ArtsWeek and coordinated by the IU Office of the Vice Provost for Research. ArtsWeek is an annual winter festival of the arts, with participation from the IU Bloomington and City of Bloomington communities. Over its 26-year history, ArtsWeek has extended artistic expression in startling new directions.

For further information, please contact the SoFA gallery at (812)-855-8490 or The SoFA Gallery is accessible to people with disabilities. The SoFA gallery is open Tuesday – Saturday, noon – 4:00 pm. Closed Sunday and Monday.


Billboard Generation VII

My Bus Runs on Lemons and Flys by Kate, 1st grade, Grandview Elementary, Bloomington, IN

Announcing the Winners of Your Art Here’s 7th annual youth art billboard competition, Billboard Generation VII, beginning March 1st!

Your Art Here (YAH) is pleased to announce the winners of the seventh annual youth art billboard competition, Billboard Generation VII (BBG VII). In celebration of National Youth Art Month in March of 2009, Your Art Here is asking kids to make art on the topic “Sustainability: Living in Balance.”

Chosen artwork from grade through high school winners will be displayed on billboards in Bloomington and Indianapolis during March 2009. Selected pieces will be exhibited during the month of March as well (details forthcoming).

The Billboard Generation project provides kids the opportunity to express themselves to the community through visual dialogue. This year’ theme, “Sustainability: Living in Balance”is inspired by the increased attention, both media and civic, given to the spectrum of sustainability topics, from global warming (Al Gore’s Inconvenient Truth) to the discussion of alternative and renewable energy (2008 presidential candidates’ new energy plans), from “green development” of our built environments (U.S. Green Building Council) to the protection of natural environments, ecosystems and farmlands (Environmental Protection Agency).

Through visual expression, kids will be able to explore sustainability issues that affect them at a personal and community level. The topic is meant to encourage reflection on their role and the role of the greater community in achieving a balance with our natural environment.

Winning Entries for Bloomington Billboards:

  • My Bus Runs on Lemons and Flys by Kate, 1st grade, Grandview Elementary, College and 17th Street
  • Good and Bad for the Environment by Zackry, Charlie, Travis, and Myles, 5th grade, Templeton Elementary, 101 W. 6th Street
  • Alternate Fuels by Lia, Kate, Sophie, and Karen, 7th grade, Tri-North Middle School, SR 45 W, .5 Miles East of HWY 37
  • One Less Car by Nate, 9th grade, Pinnacle School, SR 37 N, .75 Miles North of 45/46 Bypass

Winning Entry for Indianapolis Billboards:

  • Watch Your Carbon Foot Print by Joey, 11th grade, Broad Ripple High School, 888 Massachusetts Avenue

Honorable Mention Entries for Exhibition:

  • Clean Air by Sydney, Kindergarten, Unionville Elementary, Bloomington, IN
  • Recycle Overflow by Patrick, 2nd grade, Childs Elementary, Bloomington, IN
  • Drive Less Ride Your Bike by Lauren, 3rd grade, Arlington Heights Elementary, Bloomington, IN
  • Colors of Deforestation by Susanna, 8th grade, Jackson Creek Middle School, Bloomington, IN
  • Feed Your Planet, Mind and Body by Holly and Leah, 7th grade, Tri-North Middle School, Bloomington, IN
  • Recycle by Sayra, Broad Ripple High School, Indianapolis, IN
  • No Matter How You Do It by Dalesa, Broad Ripple High School, Indianapolis, IN

Important Dates

  • March 1st-31st: BBG VII Youth Art Billboards are on display in Bloomington and Indianapolis.
  • March 12th at 7 pm: BBG VII awards ceremony at the John Waldron Arts Center, Bloomington, featuring the winners as part of the Monroe County Community School Corporation National Youth Art Month exhibition
  • March 5th-27th: Opening of the BBG VII exhibition on March 5th featuring winners, honorable mentions and a photo documentary of the BBG VII process by Crisia Miroiu, at the Monroe County Public Library, 303 E. Kirkwood Avenue, Bloomington, through March 27th
  • March 5th-27th: Exhibition of the BBG VII winners at City Hall, Atrium, 401 North Morton St., Bloomington

This activity made possible through support from the Bloomington Community Arts Commission, the City of Bloomington and by the Efroymson Family Fund, a Central Indiana Community Foundation Fund. Additional financial support is made possible by donations from Bloomington Bagel Company, Bloomingfoods, and friends of Your Art Here.

Billboard Generation VII also benefits from several successful partnerships such as the Bloomington Science Café, the Monroe County Public Library and the Monroe County Community School Corporation.

Thank you!