Today, the Knight Foundation announced Kenmore Neighborhood Alliance’s “Big Boulevard Sign Build” as one of 36 finalists in the 2019 Knight Arts Challenge. The project would transform Kenmore’s historic business district by leveraging the power of visual art to produce business signage through an artistic sign design competition, education and fabrication process.
Should KNA receive the funding, the group would partner with the CoSign program of the American Sign Museum to engage local business owners, KNA Design Committee members, city zoning officials and sign experts to work alongside and educate local artists to bring their winning submissions to life. A CoSign project in Cincinnati’s Northside neighborhood grew the vibrancy of its retail district while increasing retail sales by 25 percent in its first year.
“Artists are experts in iconography: using design to encapsulate and sell an idea,” said Tina Boyes Executive Director of Kenmore Neighborhood Alliance. “By pairing them up with our local businesses and other experts, we believe we can make an immediately noticeable and lasting impact on our community.”
The Knight Arts Challenge aims to help individual artists and arts organizations—across Akron, Miami and Detroit—bring to life authentic works and experiences that capture the spirit of each city. This is the fourth year for the community-wide initiative that funds projects designed to engage and enrich Akron through the arts. Final recipients will be announced at an event at the Akron Art Museum Sept. 25. The 36 finalists include Friends of Chestnut Ridge Park for their “Many Voices, One Akron” project. See the full list of Knight Arts Challenge finalists here.