Public art and placemaking

Public art is an important way to enhance our public spaces, deepening and enriching our shared experience of 'place' in the public realm. Public art describes art that is freely accessible to all people in our shared public spaces; it can be temporary or permanent, large-scale or small, abstract or realistic. It can stand alone or be a well-integrated and functional element of the exterior of a building or plaza.

Placemaking is a relatively new term that embodies the practice of developing successful public places that not only make a place look and feel more interesting, but they attract people to enjoy and interact there. Placemaking is at the basis of the work of the Living Arts team who are responsible for the management of public art projects developed by the Inner West Council.

 Public art and placemaking projects assist in the creation of an identity for community, expressing current issues, celebrate heritage, and inspire the future. Public art has the potential to visually connect civic spaces, inspire walkable communities and to imbue the manmade environment with identity and character. 

Public artists have a long history of working in the domain of placemaking, playing an important role in interpreting 'place.'  In some instances public artists express a more singular vision in response to a place,  and in other instances they can work with communities to express their diverse stories, creating inspirational places and enhanced environments.

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Page last updated: 18 May 2021