MATTHEWS – Downtown Matthews will soon become an outdoor sculpture gallery. 

Melissa Johnson, the town’s cultural recreation manager, pitched the concept to commissioners Aug. 23 after walking through the Tucker Gallery in Lenior. 

“We hope that it would bring visitors to Matthews,” said Melissa Johnson, cultural recreation manager. “It will be a unique opportunity to experience public art for residents here so they wouldn’t have to travel to Charlotte or other bigger cities to see interesting and unique sculptural art.”

An outdoor sculpture gallery in Matthews will be slightly different from the one Johnson walked in Lenior. 

Matthews doesn’t have brick planters, so the town would opt for art to be placed in concrete or metal bases. Matthews won’t likely be placing the pieces in sidewalks either since the sidewalks here aren’t as large as they are in Lenior. 

Johnson hopes to have seven locations for the sculptures, including one at Matthews Town Hall, Matthews Community Center, Purser Hulsey Park and two spots along greenways. They’ll be relatively close to ensure they are part of an art tour. 

“This is a starting point with these seven proposed locations,” she said. “It  is something that can grow.”

Artists would apply for an opportunity to showcase their art in the  gallery for at least a year Submissions will be reviewed by town staff, an art advisory committee and town commissioners to ensure pieces are appropriate and safe for display. 

QR codes posted at each piece will help connect the community to more information for an interactive experience.

 

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