Like some fresh air with your art?
Bend has the perfect solution. As you know, there's no shortage of traditional downtown galleries where you can see a wide variety of exhibits on any given day. But have you noticed the growing number of pieces adorning some of the area's outside walls too?
It's all part of Visit Bend's expanding "Tin Pan Alley Art Collection" that now features over a dozen outdoor murals, including paintings, collage, sculpture and even photography. You'll find them along Tin Pan Alley, with several others hanging in Gasoline Alley and on the O'Kane Building. There are also pieces in the downtown parking garage—where the first murals went up four years ago.
Visit Bend—through the Bend Cultural Tourism Fund—expects to add additional outdoor art to the Tower Theatre, the Breezeway and the Old Mill District this year. The BCTF is funded through transient room tax dollars, and the pot of money continues to increase year after year.
The works don't have a single overriding theme. "There is really no set type of art or subject for the collection," says Visit Bend Vice President Valerie Warren. "Several of the artists though did choose to create pieces that represent something they find meaningful about Bend and/or the local community."
Almost all of the artists are local, which gives the works a certain Central Oregon flair. Public art like this also aims to solidify Bend's status as an artistic community. Warren says the intent of the Tin Pan Alley's collection is two-fold: "To beautify spaces that most people would not find 'traditionally' beautiful or appealing—such as alleys and parking garages—as well as to showcase some amazing local artists.
"There is a perception of Bend as a largely outdoor and lifestyle-focused town, but we also have diverse and thriving arts and culture here."
Tin Pan Alley Art Collection
Various Downtown locations