By: Jack Crawley
Old Town Times staff writer
On Oct. 28 the Old Town Commercial Association announced Tiffany Klein (“Welcome to FUNky Town”), Dorv MacLaren (“And All That Jazz”), Brett Whitacre (“Positivity in Forward Motion”), and Andrea Bellomo (“Positivity in Forward Motion”) as the winners of the Art Spot mural program, which was held on Oct. 2. Art Spot spectators voted for the three winning murals.
Klein’s piece will be displayed at Wild Rose Cafe, Whitacre and Bellomo’s piece will be displayed at Swanson Design and MacLaren’s piece will be displayed at the former Greenfield Collection building. The Wild Rose Cafe is located on Turner Street and Swanson Design and the former Greenfield Collection are both located on East Grand River Avenue.
Klein is already involved in the Old Town community as owner of the art studio Klein’s Artistic Finishes and said that “Welcome to FUNky Town” was inspired by the contemporary feel of Old Town that mixes with the local people and fun events.
“I was very excited to hear that we were chosen. I entered a contemporary piece that was playful, not really knowing how Old Town would react,” Klein said.
MacLaren’s “And All That Jazz” mixes art forms and was inspired by Old Town’s arts and music culture.
“What inspired me to create this particular design was the ‘arts’ environment that so permeates the town. As well as being an ‘artist,’ I’m also a musician and feel that music is an [integral] part of the overall artistic atmosphere that tells a story about the place,” MacLaren said. “I thought that music should be represented so that is what inspired me. The design was fairly simple, but it was atmosphere I was trying to project.”
Whitacre and Bellomo worked together on “Positivity in Forward Motion,” but neither could be reached to discuss the mural.
OTCA intends to add more murals in the future, making the Oct. 2 Art Spot the first in a “public art series that will turn what is currently a public and private alley used for parking and pedestrians into an outdoor gallery.”
MacLaren and Klein both plan to submit more designs for Art Spot because it was a very enjoyable experience. “It’s awesome to be able to participate in an area that is so concentrated on the arts and know that you are a part of the ‘big picture,’ so to speak,” he said.
A grant from the Capital Area Community Fund allowed OTCA’s longstanding plans for Art Spot to finally be put into motion. “This is a project that the Design Committee and several property owners in the community have been passionate about for some time,” OTCA Executive Director Brittney Hoszkiw said in a press release statement about the announcement.
The artists have begun their work on the Old Town alleys. Please see the links below to see the artists’ individual websites.
Winning Artists’ Personal Webpages: