Q. Is there room for public art in a consensus based community?
But only with much persistence from one or more enthusiasts!
And only for artists outside the community, dead, or with very thick skins!
It is very unlikely that there will be unanimous enthusiasm for any one artwork. And while the consensus process does not require unanimity, there does need to be agreement first that any artwork is desirable for long term display, and then there needs to be agreement on the specific piece of art.
So an artist in the community must be willing to persevere in the face of a clear lack of enthusiasm, or even clear dislike of the work. This may be especially difficult when these people are the neighbors & community members you spend time with, and have committed to socialize & work with regularly.
Note that it is statistically very unlikely that there will be a champion for an “in house” artist also within the cohousing community: a cohousing artist will probably need to be her own promoter.
Public art is always difficult, and selection by committee often comes to a majority vote. Achieving consensus for public art will generally take even longer, and may never happen at all :-)!