Watch art in the making! Providence 375 Tape Art Installation in Providence.

[ 0 ] June 1, 2011 |

CANCELED: Tape Art Workshops scheduled for June 23rd from 3:30-5:30 are canceled due to weather and Tape Art staffing.

As a replacement for the workshop, Tape Art Staff invite people to assist with the mural on a non-inclement weather day. To participate in this awesome creative and educational opportunity, children need to be 8 years or older and accompanied by an adult. For details/confirmation, please contact the Tape Art artists:

Providence’s 375th Celebration is the inspiration for an amazing 14,000sq. ft. temporary tape drawing at the Bank of America City Center on display in June.

Tape Art, by artist Michael Townsend and friends, is creating a unique large-scale temporary art installation in the entire Bank of America City Center as part of the Celebrate Providence 375 Years city-wide activities. Using only colored painter’s tape, this 14,000 square foot drawing will take approximately three weeks to take form by the artists, and will culminate in a party on June 30th where attendees can remove the drawing by working together to lift up all the tape.

A sample of a mural made entirely of tape. ©

My kids and I were first introduced to Michael and his friend’s tape art at the now closed Traverse Gallery on Wickenden Street in Providence. We were so inspired by what could be done with tape, my boys and I went home and adorned their bedroom walls and clubhouse with tape art. My boys had the chance to meet Michael and Colin in person at this years Providence Children’s Film Festival. One of my sons participated in their stop motion workshop and then interviewed Colin about making art. Listen to the interview on his blog,

As part of the Tape Arts installation in downtown Providence, check out a month of exciting events in the Plaza! All events are free and open to the public and take place at the Bank of America Skating Center at 2 Kennedy Plaza in downtown Providence unless noted otherwise.

There is something for all ages. Younger children may enjoy just watching the tape art process and taking down the tape at the end. Older kids may enjoy some of the films, workshops, and discussions. Drop by often and watch art in the making!


    Stop down to visit over the next two weeks to see the artists’ progress!


    Where: Bank of America Skating Center Tunnel
    – The RI Museum of Science and Art will show you how to make your own simple Victorian era animation (a thaumatrope!) to take home, and learn about “persistence of vision”- the name often given to the way the human brain blends sudden changes into smooth motion, and the interpretation by our brains that make movies possible.  Thaumatrope-making free and open to first 30 attendees!
    – Then watch exciting short films made by RIMOSA, AS220 Youth, Providence Youth Collaborative (PYAC) members, and Tape Art


  • 4:00-6:00 pm. TALK WITH THE ARTISTS!
    Come down to the rink and chat with the artists while they work!

The workshops are canceled due to weather and Tape Art staffing.


  • 3:30-4:30 pm. Tape Art Workshop CANCELED
    Learn from tape artists Michael Townsend and friends as you create a collaborative temporary group mural at the Skating Center that will be on view for a limited time!
  • 4:30-5:30 pm. RIMOSA Animation Workshop: The Art and Science of Visual Perception. CANCELED
    Make your own stop-motion animation film to be premiered at the end of the workshop and viewed later on the Greater Kennedy Plaza and RIMOSA websites! Learn about “persistence of vision” — the name often given to the way the human brain blends sudden changes into smooth motion.
    Note: Each of these two workshops is free and open to the first 25 youth participants, middle school-aged and up. Contact: for availability or visit
  • 5:30-7:30 pm. Panel discussion on public and temporary art
    Listen to music by TRUA while enjoying light snacks then stay for the lively PANEL DISCUSSION (at 6 pm) on the site of where the Tape Art Providence 375 Installation will be. Engage in issues of public and temporary art with Michael Townsend, Tape Art; Elizabeth Keithline, RISCA; Bert Crenca, AS220; Noah Fischer, RISD; and moderated by Stephanie Fortunato, Providence Dept. of Art, Culture + Tourism.


    Join us for the closing celebration of the art installation with music, delicious food, beer garden, and fun participatory installation removal! Featuring music, food by Julian’s Omnibus, Trinity Beer, and performances by the AS220 ZuKrewe and more!


What is Tape Art?
Tape Art is a collaborative art medium started in Providence over twenty years ago.  This method of drawing uses low-adhesive drawing tapes to create large temporary drawings on any surface; the world is a blank canvas.  Spontaneous and fleeting, Tape Art drawings ranging from a silhouette of a single person to towering six-story creations have transformed hundreds of buildings around the world. From community centers to corporate retreats, elementary schools to nursing homes, and prisons to hospitals, Tape Art has witnessed the powerful advantages of making images with others.

Why is this installation here now?
The concept for the large Tape Art drawing in Greater Kennedy Plaza is rooted in the arrival of Roger Williams to Rhode Island.  The image will depict Roger Williams landing on the shores of Providence and then expand to 14,000 square feet exploring his legacy through the themes of Hope, Freedom, Roots and Ingenuity. “We are thrilled to have such a large surface to draw on,” said artist Michael Townsend. “And through this work, we hope to help share the city’s incredible history, lore and ideals with our largest ground drawing to date.”

Who is Tape Art?
Michael Townsend draws on everything.  For over 20 years he has been spear-heading collaborative drawings using low-adhesive tapes on facades, sidewalks, walls, and more.  The drawings started as nightly guerilla raids on the surfaces of Providence, RI and since then, the artist has been invited to perform over 500 of his Tape Art creations on walls around the world. Townsend also creates films, choreographs short dance pieces, and constructs subterranean sculptures. He and collaborators became an international curiosity when it was discovered that they were building a fully-functional apartment space inside the Providence Place Mall which they had been occupying, undiscovered, for four years. He has a BFA in Printmaking and an MA in Art Education. His work can be seen at

Colin Bliss is a Providence-based artist, explorer, and fake astronaut. Although trained in classical forms of sculpture such as stone carving and cast bronze, his private studio practice includes film making, fabric construction, experimental casting, and writing. He has shown sculptures and installations, with and without invitation, around the country, but still remains happily shipwrecked here in the Ocean State. Colin has a BFA in Sculpture from RISD.

Pamela Baron is an environmentally conscious surface designer who pulls a fusion of alluring imagery from the natural world onto 100% organic and fairly sewn materials. Her collaborative work with Tape Art includes large-scale drawings, community workshops and movie projects.  Pamela is a native of Berkley, CA and happily makes her home in Providence.  She holds a BFA in Illustration from RISD.  Her work can be seen at

For more information, visit or email

Category: community news

Anisa Raoof

about the author ()

Anisa Raoof is the publisher of She combines being a mom with her experience as an artist, designer, psych researcher and former co-director of the Providence Craft Show to create the go-to spot for families in Rhode Island and beyond. She loves using social media to connect parents with family-related businesses and services and promoting ways for parents to engage offline with their kids. Anisa believes in the power of working together and loves to find ways to collaborate with others. An online enthusiast, still likes to unplug often by reading books and magazines, drawing, learning to knit, making pop-up books with her two sons and listening to records with her husband.

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