While serving on the design team for an urban art trail in Rochester New York, William and Teresa Cochran developed Poets Walk on University Avenue to honor poets as artists of the written word. 125 fragments of poetry are engraved into artist-designed stone bands, tablets and pavers scattered along the 1100 foot long, 8-foot wide clay brick and stone sidewalk, celebrating four centuries of poetry in Rochester, New York.
William conceived and designed the walk as senior artist on the Bergmann Associates design team, collaborating with the Memorial Art Gallery's landscape architect Mark Bayer on design integration. He also served on the selection panel and conducted extensive research over the course of two years to identify relevant poets and passages. Teresa Cochran facilitated the year-long selection panel process and created the interactive web pages and cell phone tour that allows passersby to hear each poet on their mobile phone.
Poets Walk was created in response to interactive community design workshop requests for interactive, text-based sidewalks. The Rochester Democrat and Chronicle media team were instrumental in building web-based methods to engage the community and present the poetry, and the Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester provided the mobile phone access technology. Writers & Books served as community lead on the project.
See www.artdrop.org for more information.