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Friday April 18, 2014
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Is It Art?

 

continued

Now, it will also have a grove of ghostly trees. While some people passing over or under the bridge will surely appreciate that as art, others just as surely won't.

"No matter what choice is made, there are always going to be people who don't like it," Nearing says matter-of-factly, "and they are going to be vocal and passionate about how much they don't like it."

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The 1 Percent Problem

Ann Arbor came late to the "1 percent for art" movement. "It started in Philadelphia [in 1959] and spread all over the country," explains art commissioner John Kotarski. "We got into it about 2007-2008."

The program set aside 1 percent of all capital improvement spending for related art. But "what we found was that about 60 percent of the money that comes in from the process comes in through sewer money and water money--that's buried," says Kotarski. It also led to tagging on art at the end of a project, instead of incorporating it into the design.

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