Artists on Main Street in Bowman is a program in partnership between North Dakota Commerce, Bowman County Development Corporation, Springboard for the Arts, and Rethos: Places Reimagined. In 2021, six eligible projects were submitted for the program. Initial project funding from Commerce was $5,000. In order to fully fund all six projects, Bowman Tax and Tourism gave an additional $1,000 to the program. All projects were submitted by individuals who attended the three-hour Creative Placemaking Workshop on August 30, 2021.
Catherine Hedge creates different works of art with acrylic/oil paint. Ranging from landscapes of mountains to oceans, animals and equipment. Also using different types of materials to make various designs without the use of paint brushes.
The Story: Cathy will be beautifying an empty window with color on Main Street with beautiful works of art from those in our community. The project will teach all those who want to be involved that you don’t have to go to school to be creative. You also don’t need to buy a lot of supplies. Household items can be used to create unique works of art.
Plan & Timeline: Cathy will spend 3-4 hours a month (November – December) hosting two individual classes with whomever would like to participate. These masterpieces will be made with canvases and acrylic paint. She will host the classes at the beginning of each month and then display them in the windows for the entire month. This will bring not just those that participated, but also family and friends, down to Main Street for all to enjoy. The paintings will then be removed, and the new ones will be put on display in the window for the next month.
Sarah is a maker, sculptor, sometimes potter, and lover of Greyhound dogs. Since childhood, she has always made things and shared them with others.
The Story: After participating in the Artists on Main Street workshop’s slow and quiet observation walk down Main, Sarah started thinking about how to recreate that experience for others. This exercise was a powerful way to think about a place in a different way. Sarah thought, “What could I do to extend this idea to others?”
Plan & Timeline: Sarah will make 25 ceramic bison (about 3″ high x 4 1/4″ wide x 1″ deep). She will make each one by hand using no molds, then glaze them in an array of colors. Each one will be unique and distinct.
Then, borrowing the idea from World Art Drop Day, she will hide each of the bison throughout Main Street, Bowman at a chosen day and time. Each location and bison will be photographed. These photos will be visual clues to guide the seeker to the whereabouts of each bison. The photos would be shared on Instagram with #artdropbowman.
The first person to find the bison is allowed to take that piece home. Each bison would have a tag asking the finder to take a photo with, or of, the bison and share on social media.
Marie is a colorscape/landscape artist. She has sold and donated many of her acrylic paintings.
The Story: This mural will act as an invitation to continue to explore not only the library, but create a connection with the Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library that will be built in Medora thereby stopping visitors to our city. The mural will depict the Badlands of the area in western Bowman/Slope County.
Plan & Timeline: The downtown area needs to be revitalized. The mural will be part of the beautification as it will be seen by so many. Marie will start by paiting a 1′ x 3′ sample in acrylic before starting the full mural on the side of the library.
Most of Nancy’s artistic work has been with glass and paint. She has also used wood and repurposed objects. She has sold several lawn art items and created two displayes at the local museum.
Partner: Brad Hlebechuk
Brad is a finished welder and describes himself as an artist in fabrication.
The Story: A unique bike rack would create interest through some diversification on Main Street, bringing people to see it and allow bike riders a safe alternative to leaving it on the street. At this time there are no bike racks on Main Street.
Plan & Timeline: The project would involve placing a sculpture bike rack on Main Street. Nancy believes the people in Bowman are striving to become and stay active. There are an increasing number of citizens in Bowman who are riding bikes; not only young people, but older, working adults. The bike rack would be placed in teh corner of the parking lot just south and across the street from Bowman Theater.
Rox enjoys working in a variety of mediums, sketching, painting, and pottery being some of my favorites. Anywhere can be your canvas, you just have to be on the lookout for it.
The Story: To help add interest and beauty to our downtown area, creating spaces that bring people to the downtown area and entice them to stay and visit more shops and businesses in our town.
Plan & Timeline: Rox plans to create a multi-tile piece that will be a collaborative artwork involving some of the students from middle or high school that will each paint a piece of our town puzzle, reflecting the heartbeat of Bowman, Our Town. The students won’t know what or how they fit together, until it is all compiled in the display for the community, showing how we all fit in to make our town the place we love. It will be displayed over Thanksgiving, showing the thankfulness for Our Town, our country, and our way of life here.
As an artist, Jean educates. She also enjoys growing flowers and plants. As a museum administrator, she educates people on the rich history of our area every day, and helping educate visitors about native plants is a logical extension of that.
The Story: The museum used to have a native plant garden outdoor exhibit we called the Prairie Walk. Unfortunately, it got too overgrown to properly maintain with the amount of staff and volunteers we have. This project will not only bring some more beauty to Main Street and the garden, it will allos us to bring back a favorite outdoor exhibit in a way that is manageable for us to maintain with our current staff and volunteers. This project will also help us create traffice between the museum and Mai nStreet, which will help keep visitors in town longer as well as reminding local patrons to visit the museum.
Plan & Timeline: Jean will plant two raised planter beds of native plants in the Main Street Garden. The plants will be labeled with signs identifying each plant by common and scientific name. The beds will be purchased yes in 2020 with the planting of the native plants in 2021.
Now that you’ve attended the Creative Placemaking Workshop it is time to bring your ideas to life. Remember, we are focusing on lots of little and together we will make a big impact. Projects can range from $250 – $1,000 in funding. Find the Project Proposal Application in the Quick Links above.
Artists on Main Street is being offered in North Dakota for the first time through a partnership between North Dakota Department of Commerce, Springboard for the Arts, and Rethos: Places Reimagined. The purpose of the program is to develop an example for rural community development as it relates to arts and culture, downtwon revitalization, and historic preservation. The accelerated program offers technical assistance and funding to develop artist-led projects that help make main streets active, welcoming and vibrant, and engages residetns of all ages in conversation about the community’s past and future.
The program’s goals are to lift up and support two types of local placemaking leaders: