Downtown Somerville Alliance Unveils “Cre8 Bench Project”
Somerville, NJ – The Downtown Somerville Alliance (DSA) is proud to announce the unveiling of their latest public art program, the Cre8 Bench Project. The project is a part of the DSA’s ongoing initiative to integrate the arts into non-traditional venues, expand the reach of the arts, and broaden and diversify public exposure, interest in, and access to the arts.
In partnership with the County of Somerset and the Pioneer Family Success Center, the DSA commissioned eight local artists to design and produce benches with the theme of “Imagination”.
The artwork was selected based on being uplifting, colorful, original and appropriate for people of all ages. The project was funded through a Local Arts Programming Grant through the Somerset County Cultural and Heritage Commission.
“It’s no accident that our county seat in Somerville has become a shopping and dining destination for Central Jersey, and Somerset County is proud to support that effort by investing in the arts, events, and culture,” said Somerset County Commissioner Melonie Marano, liaison to the Cultural and Heritage Commission. “One of Somerville’s best features is the easy walkability of Division and Main Streets, and these attractive Cre8 benches enhance the opportunity to have a cup of coffee, share an afternoon snack, or rest between shops.”
The selected artists include Somerville-based Adrian Collazo; Chad Fandel, owner of Art by Chad on Main St. in Somerville; Dawn and Emily Stevens of Blue Marble Studio located on Division St. in Somerville, Alejandro Medina (AKA Elan One) of Hillsborough; Jose Bustamante of Mantua Twp; Leo “Mimik” Alban of Elizabeth; Leon Rainbow of Trenton; and Vincent Santorella of Newark. Their works will be on display in downtown Somerville for a minimum of two years.
“We’re excited to be working with local, NJ-based artists to add to the vibrance and culture of Downtown Somerville,” said Natalie Pineiro, Downtown Managing Consultant for the DSA. “We hope to add to the program each year to create a gallery of multi-functional, local art that can be used and explored throughout the entirety of our district.”
The benches are currently on display on Division Street but will be repositioned before Memorial Day to Main Street.
For more information on the Cre8 Bench Project, and to view photos of this year’s submissions visit the DSA’s website at https://downtownsomerville.org/history-arts-and-culture/.