Here on Glass Street, life flows between individual yet interconnected neighbors like electrical circuitry. Simple and intentional efforts to foster connection and beauty through advocacy and art in that shared space can spark change for the whole business district and neighborhoods surrounding Glass Street.

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On Thursday May 31st, we were privileged to join the celebration and unveiling of Life Energy– a collaborative community art beautification project coordinated by local arts non-profit, Mark Making. In partnership with Public Art Chattanooga, Chattanooga Department of Transportation, and Orchard Knob Middle School, Brainerd, Howard, and Hixon High Schools, Mark Making facilitated workshops in which 133 students from East Chattanooga competed to have their designs painted on six traffic cabinets around the neighborhood. The project challenged the students to not only explore how art can beautify the neighborhood but also integrate the knowledge of electrical circuitry into those designs, all while further understanding the power of citizen involvement in the community.

studio work with Hixon students

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The six winning designers, Sarah Bargerstock, Daisha Draper and Kensha Moore, Sabrina Eldridge, Cody Hutchinson, Jade Sharp, and Xavier Wood, were congratulated by Mayor Andy Burke as their art was officially dedicated as part of the on-going effort to strengthen the community through intentional acts of advocacy and citizen participation. The celebration continued with refreshments at Mark Marking studio.

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Jade Sharp, one of the local student winners addressed the crowd of her friends, neighbors, and reporters directly after Katelyn Kirnie and Frances McDonald. Jade reminded us that: “Every community has issues. Making art can also make changes. That’s what I hope to do as a professional artist someday.” Well said Jade, and we agree that each of these students is off to a strong start positively impacting their city and peers.

Keep your eye out for these beautiful student contributions to the greater East Chattanooga neighborhoods!

traffic cab crown