Last month, I introduced the idea of creative placemaking, explained in Michael Fallon’s article “An Arts Funding Revolution” as communities “increasingly using the arts to help shape their social, physical and economic characters.”
When Sanford Health invested in the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra four years ago, they did more than write a check. In addition to being the major corporate sponsor of the Masterworks Concert Series, Sanford also created opportunities for musicians to play in small ensembles in the hospital through the “Music for the Heart” program.
“These performances help us serve the community by bringing music to people where they are, where the very human act of playing music can lift spirits and help in the effort of healing,” said Linda Boyd, executive director of the orchestra.
“Ample evidence proves the healing power of music, and the FM Symphony members who come to play for this audience become healers in every sense of the word with their contributions of beautiful music,” said Dave Anderson, director of public affairs at Sanford.
TMI Hospitality recently teamed up with The Arts Partnership to create the TMI Artist in Residency program. Artists are selected to display their work at TMI’s corporate office. Original art displayed in corporate space isn’t a new concept, but what’s different about this program is that artists and curators are also interacting with TMI’s employees.
By working closely with the artists and their work, employees learn and experience the value of creativity in their work and personal lives.
“TMI Hospitality is pleased to support the artist community because it contributes to making Fargo-Moorhead an even better place for all of us to live in and work in. The Artist in Residence program is a great way to showcase our amazing local talent and, at the same time, enhance the experience of working at our headquarters office building in Fargo,” said CEO of TMI Lauris Molbert.
“We also know that a creative and inspiring work environment is better for employees and clients,” said TMI Artist in Residency Curator Megan Johnston. “Art facilitates creativity.”
West Acres has been actively working with artists since 2006 as part of their Regional Showcase program. There are more than 100 regional visual artists’ works on display at the mall. In addition, there are dozens of performances that occur at the shopping center throughout the year.
“The purpose of the Regional Showcase is multifaceted. On the surface, it helps to beautify the shopping center while giving it a warm and inviting feel,” said Alissa Sorum, marketing director at West Acres.
“West Acres has a history of supporting the arts, but with the Regional Showcase, the arts return the favor. Our regional artworks play a transformative role as they connect with our customers on a daily basis,” said Brad Schlossman, West Acres CEO.
The arts can be integral to infrastructural decision making. These businesses demonstrate that by intentionally including the arts on the front end; the experience is better, the outcome is elevated and the creative environment is enhanced for everyone.
This was published in the Forum on Monday, August 26, 2013
Partner Emily Williams Wheeler’s banners hang in the food court of West Acres as part of their Regional.