Seeking Artists for Downtown Art Windows Project

Empty downtown windows will soon become miniature art galleries through the Downtown Art Windows program sponsored by local merchants and arts organizations.

Downtown Art Windows seeks to match local artists with vacant downtown storefront windows where they can display their works for a two-month period. The project is a joint effort of The Arts Council of Southeast Missouri, Old Town Cape and The Crisp Museum at Southeast Missouri State University.

"Instead of looking at these windows as empty, we see them as full of possibilities," said Melissa Miller, executive director of the Arts Council of Southeast Missouri. "What some consider an eyesore, we think will be a springboard to propel local arts to the forefront of the Cape community."

Organizers studied other downtown communities from across the country that have similar programs in place including Providence, RI, Waukegan, Wisc., and Santa Barbara, Calif. In these areas, filling vacant storefront windows helped call attention to buildings available for sale and resulted in more downtown foot traffic while creating additional exhibition opportunities for area artists.

Artists interested in showcasing their work are asked to complete an application form and send in images of their work. A review panel will select the artists whose work will be displayed and match them up with an empty downtown window. Applications may be found at under the event forms tab;; and Applications and images of artists work should be returned to the Arts Council, 32 N. Main, Cape Girardeau. A $20 application fee will help fund advertising and promotions for the Downtown Art Windows project.

The Downtown Art Windows program will debut on February's First Friday. The first application deadline is January 4, 2010, for February-March exhibits.

For more information, people may call Melissa Miller of the Arts Council at (573) 334-9233 or Peter Nguyen at the Crisp Museum (573) 651-2260.

The Arts Council of Southeast Missouri is located at 32 N. Main Street in Cape Girardeau, Mo. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. This 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization was founded in 1961 by metalsmith Otto F. Dingeldein, to encourage artistic awareness, participation, and expression. By showcasing the arts we hope to stimulate the exchange of new ideas and build a shared sense of community. Find us online at, or