The Cranes Are Coming!

Photo: Cary Visual Art’s new gallery space, CVA Gallery at the Cary News, has been open on the second floor of The Cary Theater for a little more than two months. CVA Executive Director Catherine Howard, along with programs coordinator Shawnee Becker, explain the gallery’s current exhibit, a showcase of photos taken by local journalists. 

Downtown Cary has been sprinkled with construction equipment for more than a year as revitalization efforts progress, but this month cranes will roll into town for a different reason – to install the newest round of pieces for Cary Visual Art’s outdoor sculpture exhibit.

Each July, sculptors from around the country flock to Cary to install their creations along Academy Street and at Town Hall Campus, to be displayed until the next year, when a new set will be featured.

“I think that outdoor sculpture, because it rotates every year, gives us an opportunity to try on new identities,” said Catherine Howard, executive director of Cary Visual Art.

“We get to pull in new sculptures that we feel reflect this community now, and to watch the transition of the sculptures over time is a beautiful thing. The sculptures are reflective of how Cary is growing, changing and diversifying.”

Party for the arts

This year, sculptors from Israel to Florida will have their pieces featured on Cary’s streets, something that proves our art community is a standout one.

“It’s such a beautiful representation of the feedback loop between art and community because artists have to be interested in Cary to even apply. It shows that Cary is perceived as being hip and cool and interesting for artists all over the world now,” Howard explained.

In addition to the excitement of installation day, July 15 will feature the annual exhibit’s opening reception, a night of local food, drink and celebration of Cary’s devotion to the arts.

“Cary Visual Art has been a valued partner in Cary’s public art program throughout the years. It is important that we support their efforts within our community,” said Cary Mayor Harold Weinbrecht, a devoted attendee of the reception.

“The aesthetic appeal of the art adds to our overall quality of life by offering a unique opportunity to experience artists from all over the country,” he said.

This year will be a first for Cary Visual Art – featuring performance art at the reception in addition to visual art.

Greg Whitt of Drum for Change will take guests on a guided drumming tour of the outdoor installation, and local dance troupe COMPANY will  interact with the art, as part of an effort Howard says will “expand what people view public art as being.”

“People notice it when they’re driving up and down, going to work,” added Shawnee Becker, Cary Visual Art’s program coordinator. “It’s just one of those things that makes the community unique and brings it together, and makes people really proud to live here. It gives us a sense of place and identity and uniqueness.”

For more on the exhibit, and the work of Cary Visual Art, visit

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