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Washougal looks to fill seats on arts panel

City established arts commission last year, is taking applications

By , Columbian Staff Writer

Washougal is seeking applicants for the city’s first Washougal Arts Commission.

The city council established the commission in May 2018. Applications must be submitted by Oct. 21. The selection process will conclude Dec. 3, and the first commission meeting is expected to take place in January.

The aim of the commission will be to identify and actively encourage the development and sustainability of arts in the city.

“Public art does something that invigorates public spaces and makes us proud of the unique qualities that make the Washougal community our home,” Mayor Molly Coston said in a news release from the city. “The best of public art can challenge, delight and educate us, but most of all, it creates a sense of civic vitality that enriches our lives.”

The commission is open to anyone, although city officials are looking to have at least one member from a local or regional arts organization, one youth member and one member who has worked as an arts educator. The city is also looking for individuals with arts experience and professions, as well as those who have an interest in the artistic and cultural development of the city.

The mayor and city council will make appointments to the commission, which will have between five and nine members, with a majority required to be residents within city limits. Commissioners will serve three-year terms, and all positions are unpaid. They will meet quarterly.

Duties of the commission will be:

• Advise city councilors on issues relating to artwork, artistic endeavors and opportunities in the city.

• Develop public art policies for acquisition, display and presentation.

• Identify projects that could benefit from artists’ involvement.

• Act as a representative of the community in matters of public art.

• Develop collaborations and connections with Washougal schools and local, regional and national arts organizations.

The city council appropriated $5,000 for initial funding of the commission. Additional funding will come from grants, donations and admission charges.

Application materials are available at Washougal City Hall, 1701 C St., or online at

Columbian Staff Writer

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