Art in Odd Places is a festival that celebrates “visual and performing arts in unexpected public places.”
The original festival began in 2005 and was spearheaded by New York-based artist Ed Woodham. Since 2005, there has been an annual AIOP in New York City and frequently AIOP has travelled to different cities. This year Orlando was lucky enough to have AIOP come to the city beautiful. Presented by the Downtown Arts District AIOP was a four-day event that took place last week. Installations and performances were presented on Magnolia Ave, stretching from the Dr. Phillips Performing Arts Center to the ATT&T Building.
There was a plethora of interesting pieces (and for some reasons lots of hand-centric pieces). My personal favourites were a bedroom set up in front of the History Center that featured a rocking chair, a nightstand and a bed made of nails. Unfortunately, that piece only lasted one day but there were plenty of other dynamic works of art presented by artists from all over the world.
For a few days, AIOP gave downtown a breath of fresh air. With creativity exuding from every corner of Magnolia, there was an added sense of community given to a street that is mainly used for bar patrons to walk from one watering hole to the next. AIOP, in essence, gave Magnolia a soul, if only for a few days and more than that it showed that Orlando (especially downtown) is capable of creating world-class events. If Orlando can attract arts programs like AIOP on a more regular basis, the core of the city beautiful will be a much more inviting, creative and fulfilling place to call home.
That all being said if you weren’t able to see AIOP, fear not! The Art City has photos! So please enjoy and look out for events like this in the future (i.e., Creative City Project) and let’s make downtown a cultural core to be proud of. – G