An Earth Day Artists Reception celebrates two new art installations at the Main Library in downtown Dayton, both of which incorporate discarded, donated, or found items. The artists, Willis “Bing” Davis and Michelle Stitzlein, will attend the reception on Monday, April 22, noon-1:00 p.m. In addition, Dayton Power and Light Company (DP&L) is offering a Community Lightbulb Exchange from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., and those who arrive early can have Coffee with a Cop, 10:00-11:00 a.m.
The new art installations are part of ReImagining Works, a partnership with the Dayton Art Institute in which new public artwork is installed at each Dayton Metro Library location.
“The ReImagining Works project is a wonderful opportunity for artists to reinterpret existing artwork and say something brand new,” said Jayne Klose, Community Engagement Manager. “The two new pieces at the Main Library go even further, by taking cast-off objects and turning them into something beautiful, which is a great way to celebrate Earth Day.”
Stitzlein’s piece, Stream at Huffman Prairie, is made entirely of recycled materials, while Davis used an old blown tire and other found objects in his Urban Mask #1.
“Using discarded materials from the urban landscape speaks to me,” says Davis. “I feel the energy and potential use in these cast-off objects. They ignite my imagination and creativity.”
The new art pieces at the Main Library are:
Urban Mask #1: Cultural Warrior Series by Willis “Bing” Davis - A large urban mask displayed in the Main Library Atrium near the Cooper Park entrance. Using found objects and other materials from the urban landscape, Davis continues the mask making tradition, which has been a vital part of many aspects of arts, culture, community and existence. The influence of traditional cultures, especially African art and culture, is a foundational aspect of Davis’ work.
Stream at Huffman Prairie by Michelle Stitzlein - A colorful wall-hung sculpture installed above the fireplace in the Park Reading Room on the Main Library’s second floor. The mixed media piece, created from reclaimed/repurposed objects, pays homage to the stream running through Huffman Prairie in Dayton. Many of the objects used in the piece were donated by members of the public.
Coinciding with the Artists Reception, the public is invited to bring up to five inefficient incandescent bulbs to exchange for ENERGY STAR certified LED bulbs, which use 70-90% less energy and can last up to 25 times longer. DP&L is distributing LED bulbs - up to five per person - while supplies last. The lightbulb exchange will take place in the Main Library’s Atrium, 215 E. Third Street, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. on April 22.
“The first LED exchange we held at the Main Library was such a success that we are sharing another opportunity,” said Holly Wiggins, DP&L Director of Community and Social Responsibility. “Customers love receiving efficient, energy- and money-saving LEDs in exchange for their traditional bulbs and appreciate tips to save on energy costs. Earth Day is about protecting our environment, so encouraging our customers to move to LEDs is another step in energy conservation.”