As the recipient of a 2012 Visual Artist Fellowship I was given the opportunity to complete a community benefit project. I choose to participate in the Switchbox Project which was initiated in 1997 to bring the work of Somerville artists out of the studios and onto city streets. As part of this project switchboxes located at busy intersections throughout the city are transformed into works of art that give the broader community access to the amazing amount of artistic talent in Somerville.

The design I choose was inspired by archival prints of Arts & Crafts era wallpaper patterns designed by William Morris. While it may seem to be a departure from the rest of the body of my work, I consider this project to be one more way of exploring one of the major overarching themes I have been exploring for a number of years now which is the idea of the beauty of mundane objects. I like to think that by covering the previously blank surface of the switchbox with these vibrant colors and ornate floral forms I have converted it from something that was doomed to be overlooked into something that injects just that much more beauty into the lives of local residents and tourists/commuters alike. See it in person!

This is just one concrete example of the public impact of arts funding. To learn more and find ways that you too can contribute to the cultural life of Somerville visit:

Somerville Art Council        

Somerville Art Council Switchbox Project     

Massachusetts Cultural Councile