The walls of Douglas and Port St Mary were daubed with brightly colored murals, the shelters on Ramsey Promenade were newly decorated, and the town’s public restrooms were given an artistic makeover as part of a raft of comissons on the island.
Planning rules state that the design should be in keeping with the area, with murals containing nods to TT racing and fishing, and officials have said that if the art scene is to reframe the image of the island, it must also show what is unique about Man.
Mr Cain said: âWe have people leaving the island, maybe thinking that there is nothing for them here, but industries are changing, digital skills are becoming very important here.
âI think everyone in government is really looking to attract people to come and make retention attractive.
âThe Isle of Man has always been the understated kind of island, with maybe Guernsey and Jersey getting a little louder to advertise what they were.
âWe’ve been a bit more underrated here, which is very manx, but I think we need to do more and let people know what’s on offer here. “
Along with the top-down funding, officials said the Isle of Man was becoming like an offshore St Ives, the town of Cornwall which has become a hub for artists like Barbara Hepworth.