Art Installation at Garage Officially Opens

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The Athens Photo Project held Saturday a ribbon cutting ceremony for its “A Thousand Words” art installation on the Athens City Garage wall.

The exhibit will feature photographs by the 33 artists of the Athens Photo Project’s 2016-17 photography class. The APP a non-profit organization that helps individuals suffering from mental illnesses express themselves through photography.

“What doesn’t make you smile on a rainy day like today when you come by and you look at this beautiful art?” Athens Mayor Steve Patterson said.

The exhibit, which had been in the works for three years, will use the space of wall along East Washington Street that is part of the Athens City Garage.

The exhibition gives APP members like Christi Hysell the opportunity to showcase their photographs for the first time.

“I’m elated,” she said. “I’ve never had anything like this happen to me before, so it’s a first.” Hysell has been a part of the program for eleven years.

The installation was one of two art exhibits from the APP. The other, titled “Familiar Places,” opened last Friday at the Southeast Ohio History Center.

During the ceremony, Mayor Patterson also proclaimed October 27 as “A Thousand Words Day.” Mayor Patterson hopes the spirit of the even will carry on in the future.

The photographs will be on display on a two-year rotational period. While all of the current photographs on display are from members of the APP, Mayor Patterson hopes to open the display’s availability for different local artists.

“Public art is one of those things, it’s something that people will never forget,” he said. “If you’re visiting, you’ll go back to where you come from and you’ll share that story with someone else.”