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The Voice of the Black Community


ARTivation public art project in DT Raleigh
Published Thursday, July 11, 2019
by Staff Reports

RALEIGH – ARTivation is a placemaking activation created and launched by the Downtown Raleigh Alliance in which seven public art installations are available to view on Martin and Wilmington streets. The project aims to bring new energy to downtown’s pedestrian experience and create another avenue for creativity in our community. The artwork will be displayed through the end of summer, with some staying longer until a new development is in place.

“The ARTivation program allows us to make downtown more interesting and dynamic visually, and in doing so making downtown more connected by improving the streetscape experience through activating vacant storefront buildings,” DRA President and CEO Bill King said. “An added benefit is it supports local artists by providing another means for showcasing their work. This program also highlights the diversity of our community in the artists who participated, which is one of the many great aspects of downtown Raleigh and this city.”

Chika Gujarathi, whose artwork can be seen at 223 W. Martin St., said: “There is the obvious benefit of making a city more beautiful by adding public art. But for me, public art serves a bigger purpose. It is an equalizer. It doesn't care who you are, what you do, where you are from or how much money you have. Its enjoyment is universal and free.”

The project is sponsored by Hampton Inn & Suites, Downtown Raleigh Glenwood South, AT&T North Carolina, Carpenter Development and Deco Raleigh.

A map of the locations can be viewed on the DRA’s website. The following art pieces were selected from a panel of representatives from DRA and Artsplosure.

  1. “Blue Daydreamers” by Kalee Calhoun at 107 E. Martin St.
  2. “Empath” and “Target” (above) by Sarahlaine Calva, 215 S. Wilmington St.
  3. “Books Über Alles” by Susan Skrzycki located at 211 W Martin St.
  4. “Amplified” by George Hage, 219 W. Martin St.
  5. “Stifled” by Shakira Shipman, 221 W. Martin St.
  6. “Flourish” by Chika Gujarathi, 223 W. Martin St.
  7. “Wild(flower) About You” by Britt, 225 W. Martin St.



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