Previously, I talked about the ABCs in Grand Rapids: Art, Breweries, Coffee.
As it turns out, art is a big freakin’ deal in this town. Every Fall, a “radically open international art competition” takes over downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan. Over 160 businesses make space on their floor and walls to display around 1500 entries of art. The New York Times included ArtPrize 8 on its list of “52 places to go in 2016” (here). The Art Newspaper says ArtPrize is the “the most-attended public art event on the planet” (here). According to “ArtPrize Fun Facts” distributed at the event, since 2009 over 10,680 entries have been exhibited and $3.6 million in cash prizes have been awarded.
I took the week to look around. What impressed me was how much community cooperation there was in highlighting creativity, free and open to the public. There was something for everyone: sculpture, kinetic art, painting, photography, etc. Even more appealing were the numerous ways people of any age could engage through workshops, artist presentations, and other activities. Especially welcomed were children, and schools across Grand Rapids have field trips scheduled.
So if you’re within a day’s drive this weekend, do yourself a favor, and stop by.