Reviving the "small town USA"

Artist aims to rebuild community in Nebraska town

The Storefront Theatre in Lyons, Nebraska, by Matthew Mazzotta Dezeen

A quiet Main Street in rural Nebraska is bustling with life thanks a public art project by the artist Matthew Mazzotta, one of the founding members of the art collective Culturunners. The site-specific work, called The Storefront Theatre, is disguised as an assuming shop in downtown Lyons that folds out to reveal a theatre with seating for around 100 people. It aims to build community—local Nebraskans even helped the artist build it—and reflects on the impact that modern commerce has had on empty main streets across the US. “Many community members revealed fond memories of a once-thriving downtown and a strong desire to see downtown become the centre of community life again”, says the artist. Last month, the project received the annual Architecture Project of the Year set up by the design and architecture magazine Dezeen.

Appeared in The Art Newspaper