The Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts (BOPA) announces an artist talk with Stephanie Barber at School 33 Art Center, located at 1427 Light St., Baltimore, MD 21230. In conversation with poet Buck Downs, Barber will discuss her exhibition, “Nature as a Metaphor for Economic, Emotional and Existential Horror,” the expanded text associated with the exhibition and the role of language in the visual arts.

Barber’s solo exhibition is on view at School 33 Art Center in the Members Gallery through Saturday, February 2, 2019. The artist uses words as sculptural elements to contemplate the morphological state of language and nature in her body of work in a variety of media. Additionally, her films have received solo exhibitions at MoMA, New York City; National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Yerba Buena Center, San Francisco; National Film Academy, Prague; Lowenbraukunst, Zurich; Anthology Film Archives, New York City, among others. Her books “These Here Separated…” and “Night Moves” were published by Publishing Genius Press, and her collection of short stories “All The People” was published by Ink Press Productions.

Image Credit: Detail images from “Nature as a Metaphor for Economic, Emotional and Existential Horror,” 2019.

The Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts (BOPA) announces new members of the Baltimore Public Art Commission. The commission is mayoral appointed and oversees the city of Baltimore Percent-for-Public Art program and permanent gifts of public art to the city. Administered and staffed by BOPA, the commission is set to meet Friday, January 11, 2019 from 11:30am–1pm at BOPA, located at 10 E. Baltimore St., 10th floor, Baltimore, MD 21202.

Appointees are Jaquelin F. Bershad, vice president of planning and design, National Aquarium; Danielle Brock, senior project engineer, site development, RK&K; Aaron Bryant, curator of photography and visual culture, National Museum of African American History and Culture; Sam Christian Holmes, artist; Mary Demory, executive assistant to the City Council President; Brian Oster, architect and managing principal, Cho Ben Holback a Quinn Evans Company; Kuo Pao Lian, architect and co-founder, PiKl; Alma Roberts, senior manager of community health benefits, Kaiser Permanente; and Kirk Shannon-Butts, curator for City Hall, City of Baltimore. Commissioners serve for a mayoral term of four years and may be reappointed to serve up to two consecutive terms.

The new commissioners will be welcomed to their first meeting, followed by an overview of the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts, the Baltimore Percent-for-Public Art program and the Baltimore Public Art Commission. The commission is scheduled to vote on the spring 2019 maintenance and conservation funding allocation, in addition to a discussion on proposals to create a committee to review and update public art guidelines, and plan a commission retreat in April 2019. Commission meetings are open to the public.

Baltimore Public Art Commission Appointees:

 

 

Jaqueline F. Bershad is vice president of planning & design at the National Aquarium. She and her team are responsible for all capital improvement projects, exhibition design and fabrication, and building facilities. Bershad has been with the Aquarium since January of 2015. She is a licensed and LEED certified architect with more than 20 years of experience in the design of museums, exhibit experiences, zoos and aquaria.

 

 

 

 

Danielle Brock is a licensed professional engineer and currently works as a senior project engineer in the Site Development Department for Rummel, Klepper & Kahl, where she has been for more than 10 years. Brock provided civil engineering services for various private and public projects throughout Maryland and Washington D.C. She is an active member of the National Society of Black Engineers, Baltimore Metropolitan Alumnae Chapter, and the Baltimore Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Incorporated.

 

 

 

Aaron Bryant is curator of photography and visual culture at the National Museum of African American History and Culture, Washington, D.C. Prior to the Smithsonian, Bryant was curator for the James E. Lewis Museum of Art at Morgan State University, Baltimore, MD. In addition, he has curated and developed content for exhibitions at the National Electronics Museum, Linthicum, MD, and the U.S. National Institutes of Health and Library of Medicine, Bethesda, MD.

 

 

 

Baltimore-based sculptor, printmaker, and multimedia artist Sam Christian Holmes, who earned a bachelor of fine arts and master of fine arts from the Maryland Institute College of Art, and taught in the general fine arts and graphic design departments for several years, creates artwork that responds to particular localities. His ability to relate his ideas to a community and create a sense of identity around that community’s issues is noteworthy.

 

 

 

 

Mary Demory is a licensed certified social worker who has worked as an administrator in healthcare and government relations for most of her career. Demory was the founding executive director of Associated Black Charities, who also invested four years with a task force developing the foundation for the viable and impactful agency in the Baltimore metropolitan community.

 

 

 

Brian Oster brings a curious, process-oriented and diligent approach to design, exploring options and carefully considering a building’s relationship to the past, present and future. His diverse portfolio includes challenging adaptive use projects, museums, community buildings and higher education facilities. He is a founding member of Design Center Baltimore and has long been active in the arts community, advocating for the arts and technology as important urban catalysts.

 

 

 

Kuo Pao Lian is an architect and licensed contractor whose experience includes architecture, design build and development. He is also a part-time instructor at Morgan State University, Baltimore, MD, and Maryland Institute College of Art. Lian is chair of the Fells Point Design Review Committee in Baltimore and a unionized set designer with experience in award-winning HBO television shows. He is also a committee member of the newly founded Major Capital Projects Committee for the Friends of Patterson Park. Kuo Pao co-founded PI.KL in 2015.

 

 

 

Alma Roberts is a second generation abstract painter whose works give insight into her viewpoints on life and the issues and forces that impact it. The artist and health executive has exhibited regionally, including Studio of the Arts, Washington, D.C., and the James E. Lewis Museum of Art, Morgan State University, Baltimore, MD. Roberts is the founding director of New Breezes Arts Forum (1983–1994), and previously served on the Mayor’s Council on Art and Culture and the board of the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture.

 

 

 

Filmmaker, curator and video essayist Kirk Shannon-Butts holds a bachelor of arts in marketing from the American College, Atlanta, and a master of fine arts in film/TV production from Chapman University, Orange, CA. His works have received critical acclaim and have been screened at the Cannes International Film Festival, the Sundance Film Festival, and The Kennedy Center. Shannon-Butts has been in special features in L’Uomo Vogue, Out magazine and Uptown magazine.

 

Choose Your Own Adventure by Becky Borland & Graham Coreil-Allen at Artscape 2018; Photo by Edwin Remsberg

The Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts (BOPA) announces applications are available for Artscape, Baltimore Book Festival and Light City for 2019. Applications are being accepted in the areas of visual, performing, literary and culinary arts, youth programming, community engagement and neighborhood businesses. Application deadlines vary. Applications are available at www.promotionandarts.org/2019-festivals-artistic-opportunities-creative-engagements. Artscape (July 19–July 21, 2019), Baltimore Book Festival (November 1–3, 2019) and Light City (November 1–10, 2019) are produced by BOPA.

Download the complete prospectus here.

About Artscape:

The 38th annual Artscape showcases an Artists’ Market of 150 fine artists and craftspeople; live concerts on outdoor stages; immersive visual arts experiences; a robust performing arts program including dance, fashion, street theater, jazz, opera and classical music; family-friendly events and entertainment; teen-focused activities and programming; film, experimental music, improv and a comedy club; and culinary arts with a delicious local eats and refreshing beverage program.

About Baltimore Book Festival:

Baltimore’s premier celebration of the literary arts, the 24th annual Baltimore Book Festival features hundreds of author appearances and book signings; more than 100 exhibitors and booksellers; high-energy readings on multiple stages; cooking demos by celebrity chefs; poetry readings and workshops; panel discussions, walking tours, storytellers and hands-on projects for kids; street theater; live music; and a delicious variety of food, beer and wine.

About Light City:

In just three years, Light City has become one of the world’s most renowned light art festivals, transforming Baltimore with large-scale light art installations, performances and music. Situated along the Baltimore Inner Harbor and Waterfront, the fourth annual Light City features international, national and local artists, innovative culinary experiences and an interactive children’s area.

1. What are your responsibilities as Festivals Coordinator for BOPA?

In my new role as the Festivals Coordinator I am the primary liaison for both our Development and Communications teams. I work closely with both departments to ensure that all deadlines set by the Festivals department are communicated and clear. I manage our branding, signage, décor and environmental treatments for all festivals. I also work on operations and logistics within all of the festivals. Lastly, I work on business opportunities for BOPA such as our banner program.

2. What is a typical day like for you on-site during a festival?
A typical day for me on-site during a festival doesn’t exist! That’s the beauty of festivals! Usually the festivals team is the first on-site so we meet up, grab coffee, settle in, go over the objectives for the day, make sure that our timeline makes sense and that everyone knows the game plan. We then usually have our production assistants that help us with any and everything that we need on-site start on their first projects for the day. Throughout the day I field phone calls, e-mails, questions from random folks that walk by and want to know what is being built, putting out “fires” that arise while on-site, etc.

3. What might people not know about large-scale festival production?
Large-scale festival production is all about making a lot of smaller pieces work together to function as one larger event. People always ask how we can “pull off” these large festivals and are amazed at how they come together but honestly, it just takes planning, a dedicated team and problem solving. All of our events are a lot of smaller pieces that all cohesively work together to make one large beautiful and fun festival! We have an amazing staff of people who are dedicated to their work, their craft, and what they do!

4. What are some of the behind-the-scenes challenges you face in this role?
I think the hardest thing to explain is that festivals and events don’t just happen or “pop up;” they take a lot of hard work and months of planning. I think sometimes as someone that does festivals and events for a living, our job is to make it look easy and fun, which it is, but there is a lot of stress in this job as well. These festivals take MONTHS to plan. As soon as an event ends, we are already looking forward to the next year. My family and friends are always surprised when I start talking about the next Artscape after we just finished breaking down that year’s festival.

5. Where were you before joining the BOPA team?
I started as the Festivals/Events Intern in the summer of 2015. I then left to go back to college in Boston. After graduating I returned as the Lead Production Assistant for Artscape in 2016. I then moved into a new role as the Light City Festival Assistant. I was then hired full time as the Festivals Assistant and was just recently promoted to Festivals Coordinator.

6. What led you to festival/event production?
I was always interested in doing events since middle school. I can remember going to concerts in middle and high school or watching the MTV Video Music Awards and looking at all of the production elements and programming and wanting to be the person that ran those shows. When I went away to college I immediately got involved in our Campus Activities Board, which was the programming board for the undergraduate students. After my internship in the Festivals Department in the summer before my senior year, I was hooked on doing large-scale outdoor events! I knew that this is something I really loved doing and wanted to do after graduation!

7. What is your favorite type of festival or entertainment outside of BOPA?
I actually don’t attend festivals outside of work. As someone that works in the festival world, it’s really hard to attend festivals/events without feeling like you’re at “work.” I always look around at logistical things or I am trying to figure out improvements I would make if I was in charge.

8. What is your favorite thing about festivals and events?
The moment. This is when you’ve put up all of the tents, banners, signs, stages. This is after you’ve put out all of the “fires,” changed the layout of a tent 15 times, helped a partner get their delivery vehicle through the footprint, spoken with countless festivalgoers, all after having five coffees. It’s the moment when you look around and see people laughing, having a great time, kids playing, vendors smiling and selling their books, the Ferris wheel is spinning, and all you can think is WOW… we really did it! The moment when you remember why you do what you do.

Congrats to Cindy Cheng and Elliot Doughtie from Baltimore for each receiving a $25,000 Joan Mitchell Foundation Painters & Sculptors Grant!

More information below:

The Joan Mitchell Foundation is pleased to announce the 2018 recipients of our annual Painters & Sculptors Grants, which provide 25 artists with $25,000 each in unrestricted funds. The recipients are: 

Felipe Baeza, Brooklyn, NY
Cindy Cheng, Baltimore, MD
Yanira Collado, North Miami, FL
Elisabeth Condon, New York, NY
David Antonio Cruz, Brooklyn, NY
Elliot Doughtie, Baltimore, MD
Addoley Dzegede, Portland, OR
Krista Franklin, Chicago, IL
Doreen Garner, Brooklyn, NY
EJ Hill, Los Angeles, CA
Lisa Jarrett, Portland, OR
Elizabeth Malaska, Portland, OR
Joiri Minaya, Bronx, NY
Maia Cruz Palileo, Brooklyn, NY
Wendy Red Star, Portland, OR
Naomi Reis, Brooklyn, NY
Jamea Richmond-Edwards, Silver Spring, MD
Kenny Rivero, New York, NY
Lauren Roche, Minneapolis, MN
Evelyn Rydz, Boston, MA
Blair Saxon-Hill, Portland, OR
Nyugen E. Smith, Jersey City, NJ
Juana Valdes, Miami, FL and Amherst, MA
Jose Villalobos, San Antonio, TX
Brittney Leeanne Williams, Chicago, IL

The unrestricted nature of the grants aligns with artist Joan Mitchell’s recognition that having the time and freedom to create is as important to the development of one’s practice as support for specific endeavors. As such, the Foundation, whose mission was set forth in Mitchell’s will, remains committed to providing artists with the flexibility to determine how best to use the grants to advance their careers. In addition to the financial support, recipients of the Painters & Sculptors Grants become eligible to apply for residencies at the Joan Mitchell Center in New Orleans and gain access to a network of arts professionals, who can provide consultations on career development and financial management.

To be eligible for a grant, artists are nominated by artist peers and arts professionals selected from throughout the US, and are then chosen through an anonymous multi-phase jurying process. Over the last several years, the Foundation has increased its attention to equity and access in the selection process, expanding the pool of nominators and jurors to include more geographic, ethnic, and experiential diversity and ensure that the nominees reflect a spectrum of backgrounds and approaches to their work. Among this year’s class of Painters & Sculptors grantees, more than 70% of the grantees identify as female and approximately 80% as non-white, with those identifying as Black, African, African-American, and Caribbean comprising 36% of that number and Hispanic, Latinx, and Chicanx individuals 20%. The artists also range in age from 28 to 59 and hail from 10 states across the US.

The grant recipients’ work represents a wide range of artistic techniques, approaches, and concerns, and engages with such pressing issues as migration, identity, notions of belonging, and representation within the art historical canon and in social and political spheres, among other important subjects. The final selections for the grants are made with a particular eye toward artists whose work has contributed to important artistic and cultural discourse, but who have nonetheless remained under-recognized on a national level.

“Joan Mitchell recognized the essential need to support artists in the process of creating. We at the Foundation hear regularly from artists, at all career stages, that many of the challenges they face stem from a lack of support structures for visual artists, and a belief that support for art can be separated from support for artists. We remain dedicated to providing unrestricted funding through our Painters & Sculptors Grants, as a way to acknowledge that each artist knows what is best for them and what will best serve the next phase of their practice,” said Christa Blatchford, CEO of the Joan Mitchell Foundation. “We are delighted to announce and welcome our 2018 recipients. Their work is exciting and compelling, and certainly deserving of greater recognition.”

The announcement of the 2018 grantees coincides with the launch of Widening Circles: Portraits from the Joan Mitchell Foundation Artist Community at 25 Years, a project developed by the Foundation to examine the impact and importance of ongoing support for artists. Widening Circles is comprised of a book and companion exhibition, which opened on December 6, and features testimonials and studio portraits by 25 artists. The project captures the real-life experiences of working artists and highlights the realities and business of being an artist, underscoring the importance of financial stability to artistic innovation and the need for and nature of meaningful funding. The exhibition will remain open through May 31, 2019 at the Foundation’s offices at 137 W. 25th Street, 2nd Floor, with public hours Tuesdays through Fridays from 12:00 to 3:00 pm.

Learn more about the artists

Download the press release

 

 

http://joanmitchellfoundation.org/blog/painters-sculptors-grants-2018?fbclid=IwAR0nSLZmQl0nPr3MX-rOiwan0oUi0bNTFEOlaqJIvLT8h3_RJW5n4F2mafA

The Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts (BOPA) announces the winners of Sound Off Live! presented by Hard Rock Café Baltimore. PBC Vocal Band is the overall winner with the highest score in the competition. Additional winners include Amanda Lynne Band, Antica, Cha Cha, Eli August and the Abandoned Buildings, Eman the Heartbreak, Jessi Adams, La Rosa, Leo & Cygnus, Lily Barek, MovaKween, Roc Writah, Skyline Hotel, The Streams, Suga Grits, and Survival Society. Musical groups competed for a performance slot at Artscape (July 19-21, 2019) and Baltimore Book Festival and Light City (November 1-10, 2019).

Produced by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts, Sound Off Live! is an annual competition where regional bands perform in front of a live audience and panel of judges. This battle of the bands provides up-and-coming musicians an opportunity to perform on the official music stage at a large-scale festival produced by BOPA.

About PBC:

PBC (Pitches Be Crazy) Vocal Band is a five-person cover band rocking R&B, rap, funk and pop hits of the last four decades. With no instruments, the band creates original arrangements of music that include tight harmonies, beatboxing/vocal percussion, and bone-rattling sub-harmonic bass to create an entertainment experience like no other. Known for remixing and mash-ups, PBC Vocal Band’s unique approach to genre and music blending keeps audiences engaged from start to finish. Focused heavily on covering music from the 1970s-1990s, PBC takes pride in bringing back the “old school jams” that spark nostalgia and memories for some, but just as important, introduces younger audiences to music that influences the artists of today.

Image Credit: PBC Vocal Band, 2018 Sound Off Live!; Photo by Kimberly Shorter 

Photo Credit: Edwin Remsberg

Illuminating Baltimore with literature and ideas during the day and a world-class light art and performances at night, the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts (BOPA) announces that it is uniting two of its marquee events: Baltimore Book Festival and Light City. The two events come together as one spectacular festival from Friday, November 1-Sunday, November 10, 2019 to create ten days of a one-of-a-kind international event at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor.

“Uniting the Baltimore Book Festival and Light City provides benefits artistically, operationally and financially for BOPA and the City of Baltimore while meeting our mission to use the arts, in all forms, to create a more vibrant city. At the same time we provide an illuminating extended experience for residents and visitors—truly a win-win for everyone,” said Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts Chief Executive Officer Donna Drew Sawyer.

The festivals move to November in conjunction with the end of daylight savings time to provide visitors with a greater opportunity to view the light art installations earlier in the evening and to engage more authors as most new books are being released in mid-autumn by publishers.

The Baltimore Book Festival, a celebration of the literary arts, features author appearances and book signings, exhibitors and bookseller tents, readings on multiple stages, children’s activities and cooking demonstrations. Light City, a festival of light, music and innovation, features BGE Light Art Walk at its center with awe-inspiring light art installations, performances, concerts, a fun-filled family zone and more. By uniting with Light City, the 24th annual Baltimore Book Festival will be the conference portion of the event addressing contemporary, innovative and historical issues through conversations, Q&A sessions, panel discussions and workshops.

In the coming months, the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts will be announcing the details of the united festivals including speakers and performers. Information sessions for residents to contribute ideas and discover how to participate will take place in January, February and March. Applications for performing artists, food vendors, booksellers, exhibitors, and presenting authors open Wednesday, January 9, 2019 for all of BOPA’s 2019 festivals – Artscape, Light City and the Baltimore Book Festival.