Can local artists help Target create community support?
Target is partnering with local artists in its new small-format stores to support community building. The executions range from murals behind registers to installations in parking lots.
“From Burlington, Vermont, to San Diego, California (and lots of places in between), we’re opening new stores in communities that boast unique cultures, histories and identities,” said Target in a press release. “We’re designing each store to reflect our local guests and their needs, including specially tailored product assortments. And to say, ‘thank you’ for welcoming us into the neighborhood, we often commission local art that sparks joy and inspiration as soon as guests arrive at their new Target.”
So far, Target has collaborated with nearly 30 local artists for pieces at 60 stores.
As part of the process, members of Target’s properties team, including experts in architecture, construction and real estate, research each new store’s neighborhood before construction begins. The marketing team then works with Target Creative, the retailer’s in-house creative agency, to support the local artist, helping them refine a design, select the right materials and install the final work.
“Art in all forms, designed to be a treat for the eyes and a reflection of the neighborhood,” said Target. “That includes outdoorsy illustrations in bold shades of green in Burlington, wistful ocean-inspired shapes in regal blue and pink in Honolulu, and Nordic-style etchings that celebrate the heritage of Target’s hometown, Minneapolis.”
Locally made art has tended to find a home inside locally-owned restaurants, bars, bookstores and coffee shops. Some local coffee shops and bars rotate art pieces to continually refresh their environment. Artists often sell their art and the establishment takes a cut of sales.
Though less common, some other national chains have also been collaborating with local artists.
Starbucks’ locations increasingly feature works of art created from nearby muralists, printmakers and woodcarvers to both differentiate each location and tap the local vibe. Apple, Tiffany and Foot Locker are among chains that have featured customized art from locals in flagship locations.
- Target’s Collaboration with Local Artists Makes Our Stores Even More Beautiful – Target
- Putting yourself out there: Coffee Shops and Art – Jerry’s Artarama
- 12 stunning locally designed art collaborations at Starbucks – Starbucks
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: How important is partnering with local artists to the success of Target’s small-market locations? Are such community activations more important for national chains in urban than suburban markets?