Sea Changes: the role of public art and the expression of creativity, identity and sense of place in a healthy city

Beth Jackson the Public Art Curator with Brecknock Consulting will explore the role of public art within urban renewal projects and its capacity to achieve the expression of a sense of place, local identity and creative community.

Beth will question and consider the inter-relationship between health and creativity and between a sense of wellbeing and a sense of place, for both individuals and communities.

Her paper will provide a case study of the curation and delivery of a public art program as part of the Redcliffe Seaside Village Rejuvenation project in South East Queensland from 2010-2011. While typical of many coastal renewal projects, the Redcliffe site has rich and complex layers of significance, including historical significance for European and Indigenous peoples, environmental significance for its relationship to Moreton Bay, and social significance for a growing contemporary and diverse community.

The project has delivered an attractive and unique destination experience for locals and visitors alike with the public art program playing a key role. While the major improvement works to streetscaping and landscaping comprised this outcome, it is the shift in social perception which achieves the real sea change and sense of urban renewal. Public art can not only value-add to the public space asset and amenity but can catalyse these perceptual shifts, evoking cultural significance.

The case study will detail what is involved in public art curation and in the creative and site-specific interpretation of place by artists. The paper will argue that the creative and tangible expression of place stories, symbols and artistic icons helps to build social and creative capital, regional identity, and a distinctive sense of place which in turn lead to community wellbeing and a healthy city. Beth will aim to draw implications from the study for notions of sustainability, sustainable development, and the provision of public space.

Beth Jackson, Public Art Curator, Brecknock Consulting

The 5th Healthy Cities: Working Together to Achieve Liveable Cities Conference
The Mercure Hotel and Conference Centre, Geelong, Victoria – 6th to the 8th of June – 2012

The conference will be a platform for Government and Industry sector professionals to discuss causes, effects and solutions that relate to population health, sustainability, natural resource management, transport, climate change, urban design and more.


One response to “Sea Changes: the role of public art and the expression of creativity, identity and sense of place in a healthy city

  1. Pingback: The role of biodiversity in creating green, healthy cities and towns | Healthy Cities Blog

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