In January 2022, I answered a call for artist through South Carolina Audubon. The top of my bucket list, as an artist, has been to create a project with the Audubon Society, so hopes were high. And guess what....I landed the gig(and with no real public art projects under my belt)! In Feburary, I began work on a public art project that would launch in April 2022 at Folly Beach's(South Carolina)Lighthouse Inlet Heritage Preserve, through Audubon South Carolina as part of the Atlantic Flyway Human Disturbance Project. The project aligns with my work as an artist, naturalist, and environmentalist. The campaign aims to give nesting shorebirds the "red carpet treatment". Adding strategic reminders like, "walk the waterline", as visitors walk the .75 mile paved walking path leading to the beach entrance. At the beach entrance, patrons have a spot to take their photo with a large mural cutout, that repeats the message of "walk the waterline" and the hashtag "shorebirdstars".
The cutout/mural(4ft by 8ft) was created off site at my home studio and transported to Folly Beach. I chose attention grabbing colors that would pop against the natural landscape and Wilson's Plovers as my subjects, since they are one of the main nesting birds of the preserve. I wanted my design to reflect the message of "shorebird stars" by creating a geometric star design without it being too literal and still reading well in photos.
Installation and project completion happend on April 20, 2022 with the help of my team : Allyssa Zebrowski( Coastal Stewardship Coordinator), Devon Corley( my husband and partner in all things), and Jasper Corley(son/and let's just call him apprentice).
In reflection, this was my dream project. As an artist, I want to instill in my viewers the desire to preserve natural habitats and protection of the species that call those locations home. I'm gratefu that South Carolina Audubon trusted me with their idea and saw my vision for the project. I'm excited to see your photos under the hashtag "ShoreBirdStars" and to see the growth of the nesting shorebirds at Folly Beach's Lighthouse Heritage Preserve.