Philadelphia Public Art

The Full Spectrum

PennPraxis for the William Penn Foundation

October 2009, 105 pages. PennPraxis, 409 Durham Wing, School of Design, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 10003, 215-573-8719,

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This PennPraxis report was commissioned by the William Penn Foundation on the occasion of the creation of the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy (OACCE) in July 2008 by Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter. PennPraxis assesses the status of the city's public art programs relative to the goals of the OACCE—expanding arts education, increasing resident and visitor access to the arts, improving communication between the city's arts programs, and supporting growth in the creative economy sector—and presents organizational models for the OACCE that would enable it to meet its public art goals. While acknowledging Philadelphia's long history of public art support and innovation, the report identifies inadequacies in the current system of public art commissions and upkeep, as well as the need for a clearer vision, focused leadership, and a coordinated public art policy.