Ferndale Arts & Cultural Commission Begins New Era

Ferndale Arts & Cultural Commission Begins New Era

THE FERNDALE ARTS AND CULTURAL COMMISSION is starting a new era of innovation with a slate of new board members and lots of inspiring ideas aimed at enhancing the role of the arts in the city of Ferndale. The Arts Commission is a board of city residents and business persons that are interested in volunteering their time and expertise towards promoting the arts in the city. Mark Loeb, owner of Integrity Shows and the Director of the Funky Ferndale Art Fair, recently stepped down as president of the Ferndale Arts Commission and will continue as a Commission member. He handed over the chairmanship to Brittney Kramer of Ferndale who is employed by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. When the commission met early in 2018, a number of newcomers joined, bringing their expertise in city planning, public spaces and the arts, as well as plenty of enthusiasm and ideas, to the board. In addition to Kramer, Kelly Kaatz, a Ferndale resident who is a ceramic artist and Director of the Janice Charach Art Gallery, came aboard and was voted treasurer. Linda Ashley of Ferndale and President of Linda Ashley & Associates, a public relations firm specializing in art fairs, galleries and special events, became co-chairman. Jenna Stanek of Ferndale is secretary, with Matt Livengood of Ferndale acting as co-secretary. Recently added to the board are Matthew Eaton of Ferndale, who is Director and Curator of the The Red Bull House of Art in Detroit, and Corissa Green of Ferndale, who brings her expertise from the Urban Land Institute of Michigan. Other members include Ferndale residents Joe Bailey, Kristopher Caster, Meghan Evoy, Elizabeth Leib, and Amy Wipp. “The goal of the Commission is to create and collaborate on public art projects ranging from art installations to concerts to events that showcase the term ‘Art-Town’ that is synonymous with the City of Ferndale,” said Kramer. “The Commission has created a number of special activities since it was founded in 2014 and we are actively seeking new projects that will expand the commission’s role.”

The Commission recently completed the installation of a large public mural promoting inclusivity, located on the side wall of the Cupcake Station on Allen Street at the corner of Nine Mile. It is the second of a three-mural project. “What was especially wonderful about this project is that it was the work of Ferndale High School art student Christina Kesiak,” said Kramer. “Working with retired Ferndale High art teacher, Jerry Lemenu, the Commission paired the young artist with professional artist Natalie Balazovich in order to take the teen artist’s original concept and drawing to fruition as a large-scale outdoor mural. “ At the Funky Ferndale Art Fair, visitors were asked to contribute to the mural project, by creating their own small square that would serve as a border around the mural. More than 200 individuals, young and old, participated. Today the colorful five by ten-foot mural with 200 squares bordering it is installed as a point of pride for the young artist, for Ferndale High School and the Commission. Currently the Commission is also in the process of collaborating with the Ferndale Parks and Recreation Department to commission a new kinetic sculpture for Harding Park. “As an organization with experience and contacts in the art world and in civic management and the use of public space, our goal is to connect the City of Ferndale with the larger art community. We are seeking to bring artists and the city together, creating community wide projects in all of the arts, that enhance our community life and give voice to the many talented people who call Ferndale home.” said Kramer. The Commission is actively seeking input from the community for ideas and talent that can add to the work of the Ferndale Arts and Cultural Commission. The Commission can be contacted on Facebook 

 

 

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