The Pennsylvania Convention Center invested $1.5 million in the acquisition and installation of the artworks, produced by 69 Pennsylvania artists, which are now placed throughout the facility’s West Wing Expansion. The Center hosted a formal public unveiling of the art earlier this year, as well as public tours of the art in connection with Wawa’s Welcome America’s summer festival. The venue’s West Wing art collection features 42 paintings, 31 works on paper, 26 photographs, 10 sculptures, eight cased objects, eight textile installations, five tile mosaics, and one video artwork by Pennsylvania’s most inspiring artists.
The site, www.paconventionart.com
, provides a detailed map of the facility that identifies the location of each piece of art, images of the artwork itself, as well as biographical information and additional facts on each artist. The website also features video interviews with 38 artists and allows users to search works by title, artist, and location within the Convention Center. A two-minute introductory video can be viewed on YouTube
. Previously, the collection was available only for viewing during conferences, meetings, or private events hosted at the Convention Center.
The website also contains a downloadable brochure
that people attending events at the Convention Center can print or reference for self-guided tours. Website visitors can sign up for mailings and notices of future art-related activities at the Center.
“This artwork was selected with the goal of utilizing our facility to showcase some of the incredible talent of Pennsylvania’s many gifted artists,” said Gregory J. Fox, Esq., Chairman of the PCCA Board of Directors. “Our facility hosts more than 1 million visitors each year who have the opportunity to enjoy and appreciate this art in person, but we wanted to provide even greater access to the public. This new website makes these works accessible to art lovers anywhere in the world while also showcasing our facility as the cornerstone of the region’s hospitality industry.”
The website was launched to coincide with the year-long 25th anniversary celebration of the opening of the Pennsylvania Convention Center. Half of the artists featured in the collection attended the Center’s free, public Community Festival on June 30 to discuss their works with attendees. The new art website can be reached through the Center’s website at www.paconvention.com.
“I am delighted that the Convention Center is making its art collection available online to a wider audience with significant detail on the artists and their individual backgrounds,” said Astrid Bowlby, whose 100 foot-long, commissioned work, “That Music Always Round Me,” is featured at the Center. “The website also provides convention and meeting attendees with a resource to learn more about specific pieces of art, as well as seek out additional works during their visit. The site is not just an archive of the collection, it greatly enhances individuals’ experience and their ability to appreciate both the art and the artists who created these works.”
The Convention Center joined with Pennsylvania arts organizations to select and curate the works in the collection. The Center received significant administrative assistance from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA) in Harrisburg under the direction, guidance, and counsel of now-retired Executive Director Philip Horn. The new website lists the names, titles, and organizations of both the Art Purchasing Committee and the Pennsylvania art professionals who served on the Blind Jury who were all instrumental in the art selection process for the pieces in the Center’s West Wing Art Collection.
“Our incredible collection of outstanding works of museum-quality art, which can be found in public spaces throughout our facility, really differentiates the Pennsylvania Convention Center from other meeting venues,” said John J. McNichol, President & CEO of PCCA. “This new website showcases Pennsylvania’s talented artists and the diverse creative culture of our region. It also allows the Center to highlight our unique collection for prospective customers as an added benefit that their event attendees can enjoy.”