Lighten Up! 

"The colors for this project were chosen because they're scientifically proven to elicit positive human response."

That's according to Robin Salant, and she's referring to the south-facing side of the empty Sears Crosstown warehouse where windows have been colorfully lit from within for several weeks now. They're a sure sign that something's happening at the enormous building on North Watkins near North Parkway. Those warehouse windows were just the beginning, however. Next up for Salant to tackle: lighting the building's impressive art deco tower.

That's where Salant has set her sights. So has the preservation group Memphis Heritage. At Sears Crosstown on the evening of October 22nd, the organization will hold its annual auction of architectural artifacts. It's Memphis Heritage's largest fund-raiser of the year, and that includes drinks, food, and music. Go to for ticket prices and more information.

And go to for background on Salant's very home-grown project. Help came from a number of local and regional lighting and engineering specialists, which makes Crosstown Lights an especially timely project for the building's possible use as an across-the-board center for the arts.

Salant also wants it known that her project is the result of communal generosity and enthusiastic volunteers. And in that spirit, she'd like you too to be a part. To serve as a memento of the installation, Salant, local graphic designers Nikii Richey and Friedrich Kerksieck, and Chris Miner of Crosstown Arts are issuing a limited-edition poster that captures the spirit of Crosstown Lights, which runs through November. Cost for the poster is $20, and it will be available at the Memphis Heritage 2011 Architectural Auction. Of that poster, Salant says, "I wanted to capture the iconography of the building, the community spirit of the project, and the uplifting ambitions of the colors."

Memphis Heritage 2011 Architectural Auction, Sears Crosstown, N. Watkins at Autumn Ave., Saturday, October 22nd, 6:30 p.m.

Lighting of the Sears Tower, 8:30 p.m.


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