BY JAMES HARPER
A former furniture store on Mary McLeod Bethune Boulevard now has artwork in its windows because of a citywide public art initiative spearheaded by Daytona Beach City Commissioners Edith Shelley and Kelly White. The art was unveiled on May 4.
Work by Daytona State photography student Sean Wright is in the storefront of the former Richard’s Fine Furniture Store, which has been closed for years.
The windows of three empty storefronts in Daytona Beach were unveiled. Art by photographers Michael Martin and Lisa Silversmith, who are former or current students at Daytona State College, also is on display at 157 S. Atlantic Ave. and 166 S. Beach St. The photography by Wright is at 408 Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Blvd.
Hoping to attract developers, customers
The themed, oversized images will be displayed throughout the summer.
Thecommissioners hope the artwork will not only make the vacant buildings more attractive to residents but also make them more attractive to potential developers and new customers for the surrounding retail businesses.
Selected storefronts are in the city’s redevelopment areas.
“Although placing visually appealing artwork in empty storefronts is the first step in their public art initiative, their vision includes expanding the program to include murals, sculptures, fountains and other works of art,” said Susan Cerbone, the city’s public information officer.
Tax dollars were not used on the promotion, selection or production of the artwork. Private dollars and donated services provided the funds and materials needed for this initial phase.
Partners include RGU Color, Lamar Advertising, Votran, the City of Daytona Beach, Museum of Arts and Sciences, Southeast Center for Photographic Studies, Edith Shelley, Kelly White, Bill Austin, Gilbert Myara, Devdata and Trupti Bhagti, Consolidated-Tomoka Land Company and Jon Hall Chevrolet.