Public Art

The City of Moscow supports local art through an Ordinance that requires 1% of the total cost of capital projects be dedicated to public art in our community. These projects include City facilities that are constructed or renovated, like the Intermodal Transit Center completed in late 2012. This program adds beauty to public places, enhances the quality of life for Moscow citizens, and promotes tourism to Moscow.

Open Requests for Proposals

Artists are invited to submit designs for two public art opportunities: Intermodal Transit Center Sculpture Garden and Vinyl-Wrapped Traffic Signal Boxes. Artists selected for the Intermodal Transit Center Sculpture Garden will receive $200 for the one year loan of the artwork. Those whose designs are selected for inclusion in the vinyl wrap project will receive a $500 honorarium for the use of their original design. The deadline to apply is Thursday, May 7. 

To apply and view both calls, visit the Moscow Arts Submittable page at: https://moscowarts.submittable.com/submit/.

New Public Art Installation

Artists Jennifer Corio & Dave Frei of Cobalt Designworks have been selected to create a new public art piece for the couplet located at C & Main Streets. Their artwork The Homecoming will be installed later this year.

Artists Jennifer Corio and Dave Frei

We are Jennifer Corio & Dave Frei of Cobalt Designworks. Dave and I have been creating metal sculptures together for fun since 2001, and as a business since 2008 out of our studio in Vancouver, WA. In our partnership I do the conceptual development and design, and Dave brings them to life in his metal shop. We love using bold colors and playful forms to brighten landscapes and lift moods. 

We are honored and excited to create The Homecoming for the C & Main Street Couplet. It is especially meaningful since Dave grew up in Moscow and graduated from Moscow High and U of I. This project is a wonderful way to pay homage to the place where Dave was born and raised.

The idea for this piece came to me one day as I was watching a flutter of bird activity in my backyard. It was an early fall day with cooler temperatures; the kind of day birds seem to love. There were about a dozen different species interacting. To a backyard birder, this is very exciting!

There were the usual suspects; the house finches, goldfinches, sparrows and juncos. These songbirds grace us with their presence every day. These are the local residents. 

There was a northern flicker eating from the suet feeder. It had been hanging out a lot the past few weeks, but sometimes I can go months without seeing it again. Kind of like college students where you see them for 9 months of the year, but then they disappear each summer only to return as school kicks off again in fall.

Particularly exciting was the fact that two fresh faces flew in, familiar but not common in our backyard. Cedar waxwing and spotted towhee.  I only see them a couple times a year in our backyard, as if they are dropping by from out of town to visit their friends and relatives.

Then there was a warbler, a non-native migratory bird, beginning its long journey heading south, passing through, stopping for a drink, a bite and a bathroom break before heading to its final destination.   

Entranced watching them all, I think to myself, “It’s like a HOMECOMING.” The light bulb went off and in an instant I had the idea for the C & Main sculpture. 

I imagined an abstract representation of the Palouse hills as the backdrop, creating the multi-colored, peaceful, undulating and richly layered familiarity of the local landscape. In the forefront I saw birds on a wire; after all, we’ve already got these utility looking poles that are a required design element for the site! 

Birds, which are very social creatures, become a metaphor for Moscow residents, visitors and passersby. The sitting birds are taking a break from the busyness, enjoying each other, people watching, feeling a sense of community, a sense of belonging.  

A flock of birds is flying in, evoking a visual sense of deceleration in order to slow down and join the others, a symbol for what’s happening at this intersection as people come off Hwy 95 and head into the heart of town.

A small farmhouse sits atop the hill as a nod to both HOME and Moscow’s farming heritage.

As motorists, cyclists and pedestrians move around the intersection, the ‘landscape’ shifts in depth and dimension, just like the Palouse hills and their changing relationship to each other. Even the backside holds the integrity of the undulating hills. Our hope is that together the elements create a scene that conjures feelings of home, familiarity, community and joy.

Moscow Public Art Collection

Artistic direction for Moscow’s public art collection is crafted in collaboration between City staff and the Moscow Arts Commission. Each new piece in the permanent collection joins others by celebrated regional artists, including Harold Balazs, David Govedare, Miles Pepper, Robert Horner, and Melissa Cole. View the Public Art Collection.

INTERMODAL TRANSIT CENTER SCULPTURE GARDEN

The sculpture garden at the Intermodal Transit Center (1006 Railroad) contains art that rotates on a annual basis. The sculptures currently on display were created by University of Idaho students: 

  • Sarah Ashby, "Perspective"
  • Miranda Kent, "Overalls"
  • Hanna Lay, "SS Luna"
  • Phillip Lerum, "Vulpes Pyro"
  • Danielle Locke, "Ourapteryx sambucaria"

Portable Art Collection

The Portable Art Collection reflects the City of Moscow's pride and commitment to the arts throughout our community. Containing many eclectic and unique artworks, the Portable Collection represents the diverse artistic styles of the Palouse, hangs in prominent locations throughout the City, and is enjoyed by many. View the Portable Art Collection.

Public Art at the Moscow Public Library

Artist Melissa Cole designed, created, and installed the beautiful glass tile mosaic at the Moscow Public Library. She worked to incorporate the panels created during the FREE community workshops into her mural. 

Melissa designed the 3D sculpture installed in the 2nd level garden (a gaillardia flower and honey bee) and worked with local welder, Brian McDonald to develop the piece. Brian fabricated the sculpture using 1/4 steel pieces that he cut, shaped and textured. Melissa then enameled (colored) the petals and parts of the bee using powdered glass fired at 1500 degrees in a kiln. There are multiple layers when enameling each piece, including black and white ground coats and then layers of color. Brian took the final enameled pieces and put them back together as a whole to complete the sculpture.

Planning Documents and Guidelines