The view in downtown Ardmore just got a little bit more colorful thanks to Create Ardmore.
Starting on Sunday, the local art-focused nonprofit began to outline the word create on the temporary fence covering the eyesore left behind when the JC Yeatts building collapsed more than two years ago, wrapping up the project on Wednesday, sort of.
“There is more to come,” Create Ardmore board member Maria Wilkinson said. “This was a partnership between Create Ardmore and the Ardmore Chamber of Commerce. We just wanted to do something, the Chamber did, to brighten it up.”
Wilkinson said the current project wasn’t the original project the group had in mind for the downtown space.
“About a year ago, a mural was planned, but then we heard that there was going to be a development and the fence would go down,” Wilkinson said. “A year later, the fence is still here, so Mita (Bates) and the Chamber and Create Ardmore came together and had a plan, and Michelle (Hornbeak) came to see me about doing a fire hydrant. In our conversation, I discovered that she was a graphic designer.”
Wilkinson said she pitched a different project to
Hornbeak, one that would tie into the workshop Hornbeak will present this weekend at the HFV Wilson Community Center.
Hornbeak stenciled out the word create along the fence in large letters, leaving space for other artists to come in and add their own touch to the project.
Hornbeak  will be teaching the workshop “Learn Brush Lettering” at 10 a.m. Saturday. The workshop will feature similar lettering techniques along with calligraphy.
The downtown project is designed to provide local artists a workspace to create any project they want.
“What we want to happen is for artists to come in and create within the letters,” Wilkerson said. “I do hope some other artists will decide to participate. We are inviting them to claim a letter and to fill it in with their art.”
Wilkinson added that the guidelines for public art continues to include: No politics, no religion, no advertising and no profanity. Any art meeting those standards would be allowed to stay on the designated areas though art on other portions of the wall will likely be covered up by future projects.
“Cleaning up and brightening the town is great fun,” Wilkinson said. “It’s so fun to be downtown right now. It’s about the unexpected. It’s participatory because we don’t know how long the fence will be up. It has been there a year and we are tired of looking at it.”
Additional art projects are also still available throughout Ardmore with more than 1,700 fire hydrants.