City of Wilson, North Carolina
Wilson, North Carolina
The NEA grant will support phase three of the Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park Project. This phase will include final sculpture installation, an artist-led public art project for recognition signage, and community engagement. This project will install massive kinetic sculptures (whirligigs) created by vernacular artist Vollis Simpson which will animate a new two-acre public space in the heart of the city. The project is a partnership between the City of Wilson and Wilson Downtown Properties, and has contributed to the economic, social, and physical revitalization of the community through local workforce training to conserve and repair the whirligigs. Annual visitation to the park is projected to be 100,000 people, a combination of international tourists and local/regional families using the park for recreation and attending programs and approximately 88,000 residents live in Wilson County.