As you can see, Charleston has a diverse collection of art in public places. The ownership also varies. Some works of art are owned by the City of Charleston or the State of West Virginia. Others are owned by non-profit organizations or for-profit companies. Either way, it’s all located in spaces accessible to the public for you to enjoy.
Bronze is a metal alloy, meaning it is made from two or more solid elements. Copper is one of the elements found in bronze. When copper is exposed to air, it oxidizes, which creates a green patina, or coating on the metal. Although this coating is natural, it is not often the artist’s desired effect. Maintenance of outdoor sculpture is needed to sustain the correct appearance for the artwork.
Some public art, like the bike racks included in this tour, is made to be touched. Other pieces of public art, such as the sculpture of Abraham Lincoln at the Capitol Complex, can be appreciated by looking. All public art is made to be enjoyed, looked at carefully, and seen from as many directions as possible.
Once you start looking, public art can be found in many places. Public art is a way to learn about a community, history, and art. The next time you go to a new town or city, think about finding public art works during your trip. You might discover works in your own town or city once you start looking!
To learn more about public art in Charleston visit The West Virginia Archives at the Capitol Complex has information about public art on their property and other places across the state.
There are many organizations and publications available to learn more about public art. The Internet is a great place to start. Look for the magazines Sculpture and Public Art Review. National organizations and programs to explore include Save Outdoor Sculpture!, Public Art Network, and Public Art Dialogue.
Our downtown contains many well known works of art including "Hallelujah" and the "Mortar Man". Click below to learn about what our downtown artwork has to offer!Visit Downtown
The East End has a lot of history and many well known works of art including "Hallelujah" and the "Mortar Man". Click below to learn more about East End artwork!Visit East
The West Side contains a famous mural and many well known works of art including "Hallelujah" and the "Mortar Man". Click below to learn more about West Side Artwork!Visit West
South Hills is known for its shopping and restaurants. Works of art here include "Hallelujah" and the "Mortar Man". Click below to learn more about what our South Hills has to offer!Visit South