BROWNSVILLE, Tenn. – The City of Brownsville announced artists Belinda Sellari, Roy Hawkins and Tom Veirs will create a unique series of metal sculptures to serve as a wayfinding system for the city. The project is funded through a Delta Regional Authority Creative Placemaking Grant.
Two proposals from each artist were chosen for the project which calls for a metal sculpture to be used as public art and wayfinding. The artists were asked to use Brownsville's Mindfield sculpture as inspiration and create pieces representing the community.
Belinda Sellari has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with a concentration in sculpture. She also has promoted the Mindfield and other tourism assets for years. She served as tourism director under former Mayor Webb Banks, and among her many accomplishments were the opening of the Sleepy John Estes Home, the West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center and the naming of Highway 19 as Tina Turner Highway.
Roy Hawkins holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art and Masters of Arts in Teaching - Art Education. He has studied abroad at the Florence Italy University of the Arts and taught art in the Haywood County School system before opening his own gallery on the Brownsville Court Square.
Tom Veirs is an abstract painter whose experience as a visual artist began 10 years ago when he started his painting career in Boston, Massachusetts. Veirs' works can be seen in galleries in Massachusetts, Vermont and Nashville.
The artists will partner with welding students at the Tennessee College of Applied Technology to create the large metal pieces that will be placed at strategic locations throughout Brownsville. A plaque will be placed with each art work commemorating the partnership.
The project will begin immediately and installation of the sculptures will take place as each is finished. The project is expected to take a little more than a year to complete.
About DRA Creative Placemaking
The Delta Regional Authority, in partnership with leading national arts and government organizations, launched its pilot Delta Creative Placemaking Initiative in 2017, to strengthen the Delta economy and improve the quality of life for the region’s 10 million people residing in the Mississippi River Delta region and Alabama Black Belt. The DRA allocated $309,000 in seed investments for 16 community projects across eight states to stimulate economic and community development through supporting the Delta's arts and cultural sectors. Along with public and private sector partners, total DCPI investment will reach $1.6 million.
The City of Brownsville, partnering with the Brownsville Arts Council and TCAT, received a $35,000 grant that combines tourism and education to promote the arts and partner local TCAT welding students with artists to construct metal sculpture to be used as a wayfinding system for the city's attractions. The grant provides a commission to the artist as well as funds for materials.
Funding for the printed signs, as well as additional signs and poles to complete the wayfinding system, was made possible through a Tennessee Asset Enhancement Grant applied for through the Chamber of Commerce and administered through Main Street Brownsville.
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