500 University Ave, Rochester, NY 14607-1414
The Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester (MAG) had reputation as a reclusive institution within the neighborhood, the campus was largely perceived as uninviting by the community and was bounded on all sides by a wrought iron fence.
The MAG wanted to take advantage of an opportunity to serve as a “creative commons” and a community meeting ground – thus the concept of establishing a Sculpture Park was envisioned for the gallery’s Centennial in 2013. The park would remove barriers to the street, open itself to the neighborhood, and literally bring the art gallery outdoors to the community.
The success of the project is obvious by the transformative impact it has had on the way the public interacts with the park. Previously the campus was only briefly visited by those attending events or visiting the gallery. Today, neighbors stroll the grounds and bring their children to play in the plazas, interact with the sculptures, or use it as a meeting grounds.
The Poets walk runs the Length of Sculpture Park