Butler County will start seeing more and more art installations and murals around local businesses and organizations.
The artists at the InsideOut Studio on High Street in downtown Hamilton have been contracted by businesses such as Kirsch CPA in Hamilton and Cohen Brothers Recycling in Middletown for art installations. They’ve also painted fire hydrants in downtown Hamilton, and the plans are to paint more in the future, along with redoing some of the original hydrants.
They’ve also had art installations at Talawanda High School in Oxford, and are now installing a large piece of art at the Greater Oxford Community Foundation.
“We have all these amazing installations, and they’re just really great opportunities for the community to see the abilities of our individuals that attend, but it is also a means for them to earn an income,” said Kim Neal Davis, director of Development & Marketing at Inspiration Studios, the parent organization for InsideOut Studios.
“All of the artists working on these earn an hourly income doing this. They get paid between $10 and $12 an hour, depending on what the project is, to do this work.”
Davis said the artists at the studio work alongside employees at the company or organization, or possibly community members, on a commissioned project.
“They’ll work as the leaders and teachers to co-create pieces to be installed,” she said.
Greater Oxford Community Foundation Executive Director Betsy Hope said they funded the grant for the Talawanda mural, and so when they wanted something to honor the organization’s Paving the Way award recipients, she called InsideOut.
“Instead of doing something like a wooden wall plaque, we decided we wanted something that made more of a statement,” Hope said.
The artists will paint a mural on one wall inside the foundation, and parts of two adjacent walls, that reflects the greater Oxford community. The Paving the Way recipients, foundation founder James Robinson was the first in 2021, will have class bricks on the mural, also called “Paving the Way.”
“Instead of paying an awards company, we thought, get one of our nonprofit partners involved,” Hope said. “We like supporting the nonprofits.”
The artists are also “a breath of fresh air,” Hope said. “They are so personable, so fun, so upbeat. They love what they’re doing, they’re creating artwork, they’re getting out in the community, they’re meeting people. I think that’s really important.”
Later this year, they’ll be creating a mural at the Joe Nuxhall Miracle League Fields. Nuxhall Foundation Executive Director Tyler Bradshaw said he’ll meet with Davis this week, and it’s a matter of finalizing the design.
Davis said the community can become involved with the artists at InsideOut Studios as they have a community education program. Community members can sign up for art classes, and a staff member will co-teach with one of the InsideOut Studio artists, which is another opportunity for them to earn a wage.
“They really get to show their talents, and they’re building relationships and friendships,” she said.
But if the public just wants to buy the art already created, they can do that, Davis said.
For more information, or to shop online, visit www.insideoutstudioart.com.