Kaufmann challenges Comparative Arts to public art contest

  • Michael Kaufmann speaks with Comparative Arts students during Friday's presentations.

April 17, 2017

During the week of April 10, Comparative Arts students welcomed guest artist Michael Kaufmann, an Indianapolis-based art theorist and artist manager.

Kaufmann took the students to the Open Space Park in downtown Traverse City and challenged them to team up and create theoretical proposals for a public art project for the space. The students had only an hour and a theoretical budget of $250,000 to complete their proposal. At the end of the hour, the four resulting proposals were submitted to three professional artists--Brian McCutcheon, Paula Katz and Richard McCoy--for adjudication.

On Friday afternoon, the students presented their project proposals to each other. Ideas ranged from a historical sculpture with accompanying AR app, a community garden and a skating rink. The winning project was an abstract pavilion designed to cover the existing walkways in the park, leaving the “open space” available for its current uses.