The Milford Arts Council is moving ahead with its project grant, “Meet Me at the Bench,” awarded by the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development: Office of the Arts in December 2019.

This project is one of 28 project grants awarded by the DECD for 2020.

The grant features bench designs by creatives, artists, and craftsmen who created and will install six unique benches reimagined as artistic and community experiences throughout downtown Milford. The bench project creatives include Sonny Cardinali, Sitting in the Shade; Erich Davis, Why Am I Here?; Walter Micks, Cop in a Bucket; Io Escu & Rich Bourque, Community Blocks; Bob Gregson, Face to Face; Gerard Kelleher and Mary Lou O’Connor, Replicant.

The MAC has found its first three match sponsors for the project, which will launch in the spring, unveiling six original works of art by six local artists, fabricators, and contractors.

The MAC is actively seeking additional sponsors and donations to meet matching requirements for supplies, fabrication and installation fees. Trinity Point Wealth, Subway, and Wines And More have each agreed to support the MAC with a portion of their gifts to be restricted funds for the bench project artist stipends.

The three donor businesses have visions that align with the MAC and the grant, seeking to encourage and support arts-based projects exhibiting artistic excellence aligned with the state arts initiative READI (Relevance, Equity, Access, Diversity, Inclusion).

Paige Miglio, executive director of the MAC, said, “We have continued to recreate our organization through these uncertain times. With perfect timing, we are moving forward with this grant for public artwork. This powerful grant project allows us to expand our support to working artists, craftsmen and creatives with funding. It was designed to be a reimagination of the park bench as an artistic and community experience. These works will welcome families, residents, artists and performers, visitors, tourists … everyone to sit, linger, reflect, create and connect with one another in beautiful settings all over downtown Milford.”

For details, contact the Milford Arts Council at executivedirector@milfordarts.org.