2023 Art by Bus Application Period Now Open!
After a pandemic hiatus, Ride Solutions, the City of Roanoke Arts Commission, and the Greater Roanoke Transit Authority are once again partnering to present a unique suite of public art projects celebrating the role of transit and artists in our community.
• ART BY BUS: Up to four Valley Metro buses will display artworks selected from Roanoke’s Year of the Artist during the month of September.
• MUSIC ON THE BUS: Performing artists will present works on select routes during September.
• WRITER BY BUS: Finally, during spring 2023, a writer (or writers) will be provided a bus pass and paid an honorarium of $1,000 to create a unique work of literature while riding different bus routes. The work may be any genre including short stories, poetry, essays, plays, etc. and may also be multimedia and include art, music or photography. Writers are encouraged to consider the project in terms of the Year of the Artist goals of wellness, justice and inclusion. The work will be printed and published on websites in September.
WRITER BY BUS Project Goals:
• Draw attention to the important role public transportation plays in connecting our neighborhoods and communities,
• Reflect on the role of transit in creating a just, healthy, and welcoming community that works for all residents,
• Encourage transit ridership and celebrate riders,
• Share the work of artists and the arts in making Roanoke a better place, and
• Encourage riders, residents, and Roanoke visitors to explore and participate in the community around them.
Individual writers or writer groups may submit an application by submitting an entry form, a writing sample, a résumé and references. A panel made up of representatives from the sponsoring organizations, community members and writers will review the applications and select the writer(s).
The panel seeks original family-friendly content that creatively and constructively celebrates our community and its potential. Writers of color are encouraged to apply.
To apply click here.
February 28, 2023, midnight: Applications due
March 18, 2023 Selected writer notified
April 1, 2023 Project onset
June 30. 2023 Deliverables finalized and submitted by author
September 2023 Transit Month celebrations and public reading
Putting Art on the Bus, and Bringing it to our Community
Check out the Visual Arts, Music, and Literature sections of the Art by Bus pages to learn more about each part of the program. And be sure to follow our Writer by Bus on Facebook to participate in creative writing programs, collaborative writing projects, and more.
Why Art by Bus?
Public transportation is one of the few features of our region that touches every part of a community. Buses travel through every neighborhood; get people from home, to work, to the doctor, to the grocery store; they serve every age, every race, ever income level. A bus trip will take you through parts of your community you may have never seen before, and introduce you to people you never would have the opportunity to meet.
By putting art on the buses, we want to remind people that taking public transportation is making a choice about how you spend your time. You can fight with traffic, or you can close your eyes and listen to music. You can spend money on gas, or you can pay your fare and enjoy a book. Public transportation is an opportunity to have experiences, not just an alternative way to commute.
Plus, it’s a way to bring art into all of our neighborhoods, for people who may not otherwise have a chance to experience all the culture the region has to offer.
Working with the City of Roanoke’s Arts Commission, we selected four pieces from the City’s collection to reproduce on the exterior of four Valley Metro buses. These pieces were installed on the exterior of four Valley Metro buses and will run through March and April of this year.
“Wishes” by JM Lamb
JM Lamb was born and raised in Mississippi but her mother was from New York City, so her sister and her grew up “vacationing” in the Bronx in the 1980’s and 90’s. She moved back to the area in 2014, having completed nearly a decade of working as a field camp carpenter for the U.S. Antarctic Program. She spent the majority of the past two decades working as a construction carpenter and painter and when she returned to VA she wanted to change her career path. A friend told her about the Horizon Program at Hollins. Mandy believes that Hollins is the greatest thing she ever did for herself because of the amazing people that make up the Hollins community and the superhuman-women who are the Horizon Program. She is really grateful for my Hollins experience and the relationships formed with my professors and fellow students alike.
JM Lamb’s intention with this project was to create an image that invokes memories and feelings that instill joy, transcending age, race and cultural differences, as well as socio-economic class in-equalities. In short, something for everyone. Initially when most of us think of dandelion seed “puffs,” we can mentally scroll back to childhood and the hours spent stalking the yard for an intact “puff” to blow into the wind. So simple and satisfying was this playful task, the thought of it produces a smile on most of our faces.
“Lipes” By Ann Glover
Ann Glover, a Roanoke native, has made monumental sculpture for the Port of San Diego, “Urban Trees,” the City of Roanoke “Trojan Dog,” and the Taubman Museum atrium “Myth.” Her paintings have been in exhibitions throughout the US., including UCLA, The Taubman Museum and the Pauley Center of the Virginia Museum, where she received a Professional Fellowship in painting. She served as an adjunct professor of art at Hollins University for ten years.
“Path Through The Dunes” By Peyton Kline
Peyton Klein began her study of art in the 50’s under the tutelage of Jim Yeatts. She became a prolific painter and began teaching herself. She served as the art critic for the Roanoke Times for many years, taught at Virginia Western Community College and the Roanoke Fine Arts Center. Peyton was one of the co-founders of the Studio School and co-founder of Salem’s Art in the Alley. She passed on in May of 2005.
2019 Writer by Bus – Lucy E. Marcus
Lucy E. Marcus is an MFA candidate, Teaching Fellow, and Graduate Assistant at Hollins University. In 2018, she received the Melanie Hook Rice Award in the Novel and the Andrew James Purdy Prize for Short Fiction. Her essays and short stories have appeared in Kestrel, Scribes Valley Publishing Anthology, and 805 Lit + Art. Originally from New York City, she currently lives in an old mill in Fincastle.
NOW AVAILABLE: 2019 Writer by Bus Chapbook - Dandelion Wishes - Lucy Marcus
Previous Years Chapbooks
2015: In Transit - Melanie Almeder
2016: Anywhere You're Going - Meighan L. Sharp
2017: 30 Minute Neighborhood - Sherry Dragovich
Check out the Starline Performance Series all April long.
*Performance schedule subject to change
RIDE Solutions is excited to announce the 2019 Starline Trolley Performance Series. Back for the 6th straight year, with more musicians, more performances, and more opportunities to explore Roanoke transit alternatives, we welcome the return of all of last year's performers as well as a couple of special performances by artists from 5 Points Music Sanctuary!
- Erin and Joy- Celtic, folk
- Erin Hunter (Violin)
- Joy Truskowski (Guitar/vocals)
- Mojo Sauce Hornsmen- Jazz, funk
- Justin Pinckney (Saxophone)
- John Stump (Trumpet)
- Ernie Freeman (Trumpet)
- Carla & Brad - Folk/Rock/Americana
- Carla Nelson (Guitar)
- Brad Collier (Guitar)
- Beren & Lúthien - Traditional Celtic
- Julie Borden (Bodhran)
- Josh Kinn (Bouzouki)