GO OUT DOORS – NEIGHBORS 2021 continues to grow last year’s “Go Out Doors-Neighbors” collaborative public art campaign featuring upcycled, artist-decorated doors installed on bike and nature trails “celebrate reconnection with nature, our senses, and healthful outdoor activity” to the succor of our neighboring communities emerging from COVID-19 isolation.
Inspired by the En Plein Air exhibition on NYC’s High Line, The Umbrella Arts Center’s original “Go Out Doors” installation was displayed on the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail in West Concord in summer of 2020. By fall, additional commissions cropped up as surprising waypoints of delight on paths across neighboring Concord Center, Arlington and Lexington — symbolically connecting three towns, three bikeways, three cultural districts, and three visitor centers.
In 2021, Go Out Doors – Neighbors projects have continued to spread, with new art doors installed or planned in Carlisle, Westford, Concord, Arlington, Lexington, Medford, Groton, Minute Man National Historical Park, and eight villages in Newton including Auburndale; Newton Centre; Newton Highlands, Newton Upper Falls, Newtonville, Nonantum, Waban and West Newton.
Go Out Doors asks: “How can we, as artists, draw more people outside to explore nature? What might we discover if, on foot or wheel, we find ourselves on a path through the woods – hidden from the roads we travel daily? What happens if we leave our electronics behind and find that steps from the front door a sensory world awaits? What happens if we walk and bike daily to and from school and work? Or just for fun? What might we feel? What might change?”
Designs have emphasized local wildlife and environmental stewardship themes, or forms of healthful outdoor activity and companionship. Doors evoke inspiration, whimsy, irony, reflection, connection, curiosity, spirituality, local culture and history, and/or joy.
Watch for new doors installations in Arlington and additional towns to be featured here starting in July!