The following article is part of the Art Forward series of the Rahr-West Art Museum.
Public art is a driving force in the revitalization of the city of Manitowoc, and the Rahr-West Art Museum is launching a Public Art Tour app to share the city’s cultural habitat with more people. The online app tour, available at https://rahrwest.stqry.app/, travels through downtown Manitowoc and beyond, showcasing vibrant murals, handcrafted sculptures and cultural gems that make the city’s neighborhoods unique.
With 31 stops showcasing Manitowoc’s public art, there’s a sight for everyone to see on the walking tour of downtown and nearby parks. The app features an interactive map showing the location of each mural and sculpture. Plus, each public art stop is described in detail, including the title of the work, the location, the artist(s), and the creative inspiration behind the work. Photograph and related links containing additional information about the art or subject are also included for each public art site.
The Rahr-West Public Arts app aligns Manitowoc with some of the country’s emerging cities, each of which recognizes the fundamental importance of cultural development to local economic growth and quality of life.
“As the summer tourist season kicks off, the Ministry of Tourism is delighted to be able to offer the Public Art Tour app to visitors.” said Courtney Hansen, director of tourism for the city of Manitowoc. “Wall and public art walks continued to be a trending activity to create memorable photo ops of their trip.”
The Rahr-West Public Arts Tour app was developed by Rahr-West Deputy Director Diana Bolander through the Stqry platform. Stqry (not a typo) works with organizations around the world to share their stories and improve their visitor experience. The app visitors will find multimedia background information about the artwork. The Public Arts Tour app is set to be the first of many orientation and information tours created by the Rahr-West Art Museum, the City of Manitowoc Department of Tourism and Stqry.
“Over the past five years, we’ve seen an explosion of public art at Manitowoc,” said Greg Vadney, executive director of the Rahr-West Art Museum. “The Public Arts Tour app is a natural next step in sharing more of our city’s culture.”
The Rahr-West Art Museum Public Arts Tour is both a sightseeing enhancement and a way for residents to learn about their cultural community. The app is available through the web to allow a variety of users to access the tour. Funding for the tour was secured in 2021 by the City of Manitowoc’s Room Tax Commission and supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Art Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Each of the 31 stops will also soon feature a sign with a QR code so you can easily scan and start the tour from various downtown locations. Rahr-West Art Museum invites you to try the app at https://rahrwest.stqry.app/ and experience our unique and creative environment.