Bourbon barrels about to go up for auction

Employees of Wilhite Ltd. unload bourbon barrels to install them throughout downtown as part of the LexArts public art Bourbon Barrel Project on Town Branch on Sept. 15, 2013. © Herald-Leader photo by Matt Goins.

Employees of Wilhite Ltd. unload bourbon barrels to install them throughout downtown as part of the LexArts public art Bourbon Barrel Project on Town Branch on Sept. 15, 2013. © Herald-Leader photo by Matt Goins.

If you have been eyeing one of the dozens of painted bourbon barrels downtown thinking you might have a place for it in your home, you could have a chance to snap it up next month.

The final act of the Bourbon Barrel Project on Town Branch will be the closing celebration and barrel auction Nov. 16 at Buster’s Billiards and Backroom, 899 Manchester Street, where 31 barrels will be up for grabs.

The Bourbon Barrel Project was launched late in the summer, when artists were commissioned to paint 41 barrels that were then set out to mark the path of Town Branch under downtown Lexington. Some barrels reflect the history of local distilleries, some of which used to sit along the waterway; others depict local history and scenes; and some are simply artwork.

Some barrels will not be available for auction because their sponsors paid to retain ownership of them after the display.

Auctions have been standard operating procedure after public art projects such as the 2000 and 2010 Horse Mania projects. Proceeds from the auction will benefit LexArts’ Public Art Fund and other initiatives. The barrels will remain on public display until Nov. 10.

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