ABOUT HORSE MANIA 2010
Horse Mania 2010 celebrates what makes Lexington unique in a way that
is uniquely Lexington. By turning art into a public spectacle. And turning
the entire city into an art gallery where people could experience it, up
close and personal.
From the day the painted ponies were turned loose on the streets, the public took them to its heart. It was exhilarating to see people, day and night, singly or in groups, trekking from horse to horse, examining, exclaiming, analyzing, discussing. The horses seemed to prance effortlessly across social barriers, inspiring strangers to share the mutual delight of discovery.
That’s powerful stuff. And exactly what public art is intended to do.
BEYOND THE EXHIBITION: THE PUBLIC ART FUND
A portion of the $761,300 in proceeds from the original Horse Mania auction in 2000 got LexArts’ Public Art Fund up and running. In December 2010, the auction of the 82 artists-decorated horses brought a total of $425,750. Of that amount, $182,008 went to the Public Art Fund. The funds and momentum generated by Horse Mania 2010 will continue to feed LexArts’ efforts to keep art in touch with the everyday life of the community.
To date, the LexArts Public Art Fund has supported the creation of four city-wide murals and a sculpture commissioned for the Ashland Park Neighborhood Association and to host forums and round table discussions to engage and educate the community about contemporary public art. New public art projects under consideration are being exhibited at the City Gallery at the Downtown Arts Center. Long after the horses are gone from the public eye, their legacy will continue to transform Lexington’s public spaces into a museum without walls. Art becomes a part of the everyday. And makes every day just a little bit special.
HORSE MANIA AND THE COMMUNITY
Each sponsor of a Horse Mania 2010 horse was asked to select one or two local charities that would share in the proceeds of auction. The $182,008 distributed to 84 charities demonstrates how the arts are integrated into the life of the community.
HORSE PLAY for ARTS EDUCATION
As excitement about the launch of Horse Mania 2010 neared a fever pitch, the idea of allowing students from Fayette County public and private schools to participate led to Horse Play for Arts Education. Modeled after Horse Mania, the foals and horses decorated by the students were on public display throughout Lexington’s public libraries during the summer and fall of 2010. The Horse Play foals and horses were auctioned in March 2011, garnering $82,200. Of that amount, $36,805 will go back into the schools’ arts programs. Another $36,805 will fund arts education programs.
LexArts, the organizer of Horse Mania 2010, is a non-profit community organization that believes a strong and vibrant arts community enhances the quality of life in central Kentucky. Through its annual Fund for the Arts, LexArts raises millions of dollars to support local arts groups and programs. As the local area arts council, LexArts develops and manages arts programs such as Horse Mania and Gallery Hop. To find out more about the arts in Lexington, visit www.lexarts.org.
Horse Mania Artist and Sponsor Reception June 24, 2010