2017-03-16 / Community

Artist seeks area barn to transform


Artist Catie Newell is searching for a barn for an art installation in the Port Austin area. The project - “A Gift To The Sky” - will be visible by day and by night, thanks to some internal lighting. This photo, which was included in Newell’s project proposal, is an example of the type of structure she is seeking. Artist Catie Newell is searching for a barn for an art installation in the Port Austin area. The project - “A Gift To The Sky” - will be visible by day and by night, thanks to some internal lighting. This photo, which was included in Newell’s project proposal, is an example of the type of structure she is seeking. PORT AUSTIN — An architectural artist hopes to transform a barn into a creative vision and is looking for the public’s help to find the perfect structure in the tip of the Thumb.

Chris Boyle, president of the Greater Port Austin Chamber of Commerce, announced that artist Catie Newell was selected to complete an installation in the Port Austin area. The project - “A Gift To The Sky” - will be a barn that is visible by day - and by night, thanks to some internal lighting.

Newell recently spent two days driving around the Port Austin exploring barns and silos for her creation. Although she has found a couple barns that interest her, Newell needs a barn that is not in use, can be seen from the road, is solid enough to suspend material from beams and weather proof enough - or able to be repaired to be weather-proof enough - that it will block most of the wind and keep out the rain.

The Chamber and Newell are requesting some local help with the art installation in the form of a barn, a place for Newell to stay during the project and some tools.

Newell hopes to begin construction in May and finish by September.

Newell, the founding principal of the art and architecture practice Alibi Studio, is an artist and architect working in the Detroit and Ann Arbor areas and was recently appointed Director of the Master of Science in Material Systems & Digital Technologies at U-M’s Taubman College School of Architecture.

Newell is also an Assistant Professor of Architecture at the Taubman College of Architecture & Urban Design. A licensed architect, she has a Masters of Architecture from Rice University and a Bachelor of Science from Georgia Tech.

In 2006, Newell won the SOM Prize for Architecture, Design & Urban Design with her project “Weather Permitting.” Before joining the U-M as the Oberdick Fellow in 2009, Newell was a project designer at Office dA in Boston.

For more information and to help, call 989-738-7600, email portaustinchamber@yahoo.com or see www.portaustinarea.com.

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