GREAT FALLS — Downtown Great Falls is getting another periodic makeover of sorts, thanks to the Urban Art Project, a series of paintings and exhibits on display in the windows of the 1st Avenue South parking garage.
Cortni Harant is the project director and says they want to welcome artists and spectators of all kinds to help make downtown Great Falls that much more colorful.
“Stuff like this makes downtown more vibrant and a place people want to be, as opposed to a place they avoid,” she said.
Harant has been leading the project since March 2019, when she took over for the project founder, Jean Price, after Price passed away.
Price started the project in 2005 as an idea to show her and other artists’ work to the community, but after it got more attention than she expected, she knew she had to make it an annual event.
Harant is an art teacher at Great Falls High School, and volunteers her time to maintain the project and give voices to artists who want their work to be seen as part of the project.
She says she knew she had to help keep it going when Price asked her to take the reins: “She approached me when she knew things weren’t going well and asked if I would help keep the project alive, which I am honored to do,” said Harant.
Harant is glad to have artists back to showing their work to the community and is pushing to be inclusive of people from all walks of life as she helps continue Price's legacy.
New installations are presented in February, June, and October of each year and remain up for three months.
The project will host a free reception for the public from 5-7 p.m. on June 24 in front of the exhibits at the parking garage at 315 1st Avenue South.
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