Now You See It, Now You Don’t: Public Art That Disappears

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<p>(Corey H. Jones/CPR News)</p>
<p>Artist Nikki Pike with her P.S. You Are Here project “Sound Totems,” which are in three Denver parks. </p>

Dumpsters covered in colorful murals, pictorial crosswalks painted across a busy city street and tree trunks transformed into music boxes. These are examples of public art pieces you may have noticed in Denver, each made possible by a citywide pilot program called P.S. You Are Here.

Denver Arts & Venues, the city agency in charge of many public venues and cultural activities, grants funds to new projects every year. They must be outdoors, reflect the community and be temporary. This art disappears, typically within three months to a year.

P.S. You Are Here is an extension of Denver's cultural plan, "IMAGINE 2020." In 2014, $40,000 was distributed to eight projects. The subsequent year, about $60,000 went to nine projects. Denver Arts & Venues opens its call for new proposals Friday.

Lisa Gedgaudas is a program administrator with Denver Arts & Venues and runs the city initiative Create Denver. She spoke with Colorado Matters host Ryan Warner.

Photo: P.S. You Are Here Denver, Birdseed Collective dumpster
After receiving a P.S. You Are Here grant of $4,000 in 2014, Birdseed Collective painted 55 dumpsters in the southwest Denver neighborhood of Sun Valley.