Traffic Signal Boxes in Huntington Become Art
The Town of Huntington’s efforts to bring art to public streets continues, with works installed on four traffic signal boxes in the past few weeks – including the first on a signal box in Huntington Station — three more scheduled by the end of the month, another three in the pipeline for installation by the end of September and a resolution to add 10 more scheduled for consideration at the August 15, 2017 Town Board meeting.
Late last month, William Low’s Tacking off the Cape was installed on the signal box at the southeast corner of Main and New Streets in Huntington Village and Monica Chulewicz’ The Healing When The Sky Opens Up was placed on a box at Depot Road and East 13th Street in Huntington Station, the first in that community. Last week, another Low work, Bumblebee, was installed on the northwest corner of Main and Clinton Streets, and Jack Pierce’s Flowers was placed on the box at the southwest corner of Main Street and New York Avenue.
Later this month, two works by Joseph Scinto, The Bell Tower of St. John’s and Tear Open a Book! are scheduled to be installed on boxes on Main Street, appropriately near St. John’s Episcopal Church and the Huntington Public Library. Shortly afterward should come installation of the remaining four works: Eileen Haritondas’ Fiery Sunflowers, on Depot Road between East 10th and 11th Streets; Alice Plusch’s Delectable Delights, at the intersection of Woodbury Road, Soundview Road, High Street and Carley Avenue; Splashes of Hope’s Heckscher Park, on Broadway, at the west exit of the North Parking Garage at the Huntington Long Island Rail Road Station; and Robert Giordano’s Celebrate Diversity, on Depot Road and East 17th Street.
All of the works were chosen by a panel selected from the Town’s Public Art Advisory committee, which reviewed a total of 21 submissions in response to requests for proposals. Seven of the 10 works are by Huntington artists; the two artists responsible for the remaining three are from Bayport and Seaford. The installations will bring to 15 the number of signal boxes decorated since the program began in 2015.
“Art on signal boxes serves a number of different purposes,” Supervisor Frank P. Petrone said. “For one, the art helps reduce graffiti on the boxes. But just as important, the art adds a distinctiveness and flair to our commercial districts. The boxes are interesting to look at, tell stories about our area and prove that you don’t have to go to a museum to see fine art. I thank our Business Improvement Districts for helping with some of the funding and I am pleased that we continue to be able to expand this popular program.”
A total of $13,600 in funding was pledged by the Huntington Village and Huntington Station Business Improvement Districts; additional funding was to come from an appropriation from the Town’s Public Art Initiative. Because of lower than expected expenses for these installations, more than $9,380 remains from the pledged funds, allowing for an additional 10 installations.
A resolution to be considered at the August 15 Town Board meeting notes that two different selection panels, one for Huntington Village and the other for Huntington Station, reviewed submissions from 27 different interested artists. Five of the selected works will be installed in Huntington Station, all along New York Ave, and five at various locations in Huntington Village. Eight artists are represented in the 10 works, including three whose other works were part of the earlier group this year.