Creative Conversations: Artists Addressing the Built Frontier

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Renderings of American Riad by Ghana ThinkTank; Renderings (by goCstudio) of Mini Mart City Park by SuttonBeresCuller; III by Liz Glynn; Blood Pudding by Sharon Bridgforth

As cities grow more crowded, built environments are increasingly a dear commodity for all of us. For artists, their careers are also at stake in the never ending quest for space. On January 25, at San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI), Creative Capital will lead a conversation between artists who are addressing community, gentrification, and displacement through their art practice. These artists—Sharon Bridgforth, Ben Beres (from SuttonBeresCuller), Liz Glynn and Maria del Carmen Montoya (from Ghana ThinkTank)—are using architecture, community organizing and real estate to creatively push how we think about the built environment. The panel discussion, moderated by Moy Eng, Executive Director of Community Arts Stabilization Trust (CAST), is the second in our series of discussions called Creative Conversations, and is co-presented with SFAI.

We will livestream the conversation (RSVP here) from 7-9pm PST on Wednesday, January 25, and take questions from Twitter. Use the hashtag #CreativeConvos, #GutRehab or our handle @creativecap to follow along. In the meantime, read on to learn more about the presenting artists.

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In Remembrance of Bill Bowes

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We were saddened to learn of the passing of William K. Bowes, Jr. in late December. A giant in the venture capital field, Bill Bowes was a founding partner of U.S. Venture Partners, a prominent Silicon Valley firm. He was also a founding member of the Creative Capital board of directors. Additionally, he served as a trustee for a number of research and education oriented nonprofit institutions, including the Exploratorium: Museum of Science and the University of California, San Francisco Foundation.

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A Month of Performance Festivals Begins

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Neal Medlyn as Champagne Jerry

If you’re a fan of performing arts, January is an exciting month with tons of festivals, conferences and events planned all over the New York area. It can be overwhelming, so we put together a list of suggestions of events to check out. Below are some events and performances by a few of the artists Creative Capital has supported.

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A Message from Suzy Delvalle: Stand By Creative Capital As We Support Artists


Queridos Amigos,

Creative Capital’s year has been filled with rich creativity, fierce artistic dedication, and bold innovation. We made awards to 46 exceptional projects in Emerging Fields, Literature, and Performing Arts, and served 3,057 artists across the country through 107 workshops and webinars.

In the coming year, we’ll continue to provide the services we’re renowned for, as well as thinking about increased challenges artists face and how we can address them. We feel prepared to tackle this work with you at our side! Together, we are investing in ideas that shape the future, and we could not do it without you!

Now, perhaps more than ever before, it’s critical for artists’ voices to be heard loud and clear. Please consider making a donation of $25 or more today to help us ensure they are!

Felices Fiestas,
Susan R. Delvalle
President & Executive Director

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The Arts Writers Grant Program Announces 2016 Grantees

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Photo from “Transplant Exploits: Detroit’s Savior Complex” on ARTS.BLACK by Taylor Aldridge

The Creative Capital | Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant Program is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2016 grants. Designed to support writing about contemporary art, as well as to create a broader audience for arts writing, the program aims to strengthen the field as a whole and to ensure that critical writing remains a valued mode of engaging the visual arts.

In its 2016 cycle, the Arts Writers Grant Program has awarded a total of $695,000 to twenty writers. Ranging from $15,000 to $50,000 in four categories—articles, blogs, books and short-form writing—these grants support projects addressing both general and specialized art audiences, from scholarly studies to self-published blogs.

It’s an exciting bunch of writers and scholars! Check it out below, as well as a closer look at one project from each category.

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Creative Capital Artists and Their Work Head to Miami

It’s that time of year again when artists head to Miami for the numerous art fairs. If you’re in town, be sure to check out these Creative Capital artists around town. The fairs are open Dec 1-4.

Art Basel Miami Fair
Edgar Arceneaux, Galerie Nathalle Obadia
Sanford Biggers, David Castillo Gallery
Nick Cave, Jack Shainman Gallery
Jennie C. Jones, Sikkema Jenkins & Co.
Simone Leigh, Luhring Augustine
Jillian Mayer, Film Program
Carlos Motta, P.P.O.W.
Pat O’Neill, Cherry and Martin
Pope.L, Mitchell-Innes & Nash

NADA Fair
Nancy Davidson, Lord Ludd Gallery
Beatriz Santiago Muñoz, Galería Agustina Ferreyra
Chemi Rosado-Seijo, Proyectos Ultravioleta

Art Miami
Joan Waltemath, C. Grimaldis Gallery
Brittany Nelson, David Klein Gallery
Angel Nevarez and Valerie Tevere, Context Art Miami Sound Positions

Untitled Art Fair
Ken Gonzales-Day, Luis de Jesus Los Angeles
Sandford Biggers, Monique Meloche

Pulse Miami Beach
Ann Hamilton, Elizabeth Leach Gallery

Other venues:

Perez Art Museum Miami
Jillian Mayer, Slumpies
Carlos Motta, Histories for the Future

Vizcaya Museum
Yara Travieso

Lowe Art Museum at University of Florida
Titus Kaphar, The Vesper Project

Congratulations to Paul Beatty on winning the Man Booker Prize!

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Paul Beatty became the first American to win the Man Booker Prize with his book, The Sellout. According to the New York Times, the judges were unanimous in their decision, citing the novel’s “inventive comic approach to the thorny issues of racial identity and injustice.” The book received a Creative Capital award in 2009, and it was published in 2015 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

In an interview ahead of the release of The Sellout, Paul Beatty told us, “when I write I have a general idea of where the exit is, but it takes forever for me to get there.” After having funded Paul’s work seven years ago, it’s a huge deal to see him win this prestigious prize. Congratulations Paul! All of us at Creative Capital are so happy to see that your hard work has paid off, and we’re so thrilled to have been able to help along the way!

Read the New York Times article about the award ceremony

Buy the book on Amazon

Read our 2015 interview with Paul Beatty

Creative Capital staff reading The Sellout in the office!

Creative Capital staff reading The Sellout in the office!

George Legrady’s 1973 Photographs of the Cree People Are Now Online

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An Inuit woman, Maggie Ekoomiak, living in a Cree community in James Bay with artist George Legrady in the background

In 1973, 23-year old George Legrady (2002 Emerging Fields) was invited by the Cree indigenous communities to photograph their way of life. The Cree people were about to enter negotiations to dispute a dam project that would flood land they had lived on for millennia. Recently, George received funding to digitally archive these photographs. Looking at them, I found a striking similarity between that moment in 1973 and the one we are living in now, as 280 First Nations tribes have convened to protest the construction of an oil pipeline in North Dakota. Wanting to learn more, I asked George to select a few images and share his experience.

I am a digital media artist who has worked with integrating computation with conceptual art and photography since the mid-1980s. I received a Creative Capital award in 2002 for a project called Speaking/Sensing Space.

My first major project as an artist began in 1973, when I visited the James Bay Cree indigenous communities in northern Quebec. I took about 3,200 photos while living with the Cree over the course of 8 to 12 weeks (about 41 images a day). The return visits which took place with two McGill University ethnographers and my art colleague, Andres Burbano from Bogota, provided insight as to how a culture changes over time.

In 2012, I received a National Science Foundation Arctic Social Science grant to digitize the photographs and revisit the Cree to present the images back to the communities. Of the existing photos, I have digitized and archived about 700 to be used by the Cree and ethnographers. Below is a selection of 3 x 3 clusters of images from 1973 with anecdotal comments.
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Artists Head to Kentucky for IdeaFestival

Jeffrey Gibson's 2014 exhibition at Marc Strauss Gallery

Jeffrey Gibson’s 2014 exhibition at Marc Strauss Gallery

IdeaFestival is an annual event based in Louisville, Kentucky where innovators across all fields come together to talk about how their work precipitates change. Every year IdeaFestival invites Creative Capital to present a session called “Art at the Edge.” This year’s panel, taking place on September 29, is an exciting opportunity to give a platform to some of the artists we support.

This year, our Executive Director Suzy Delvalle will be joined onstage by artists Jeffrey Gibson, Heather Dewey-Hagborg, Shawn Peters and Phillip Andrews Lewis for the Creative Capital presentation.

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Notes on Notes, Trust and the Documentary Promise

Excerpt from the documentary "NUTS!" by Penny Lane

Excerpt from the documentary “NUTS!” by Penny Lane

Earlier this summer, filmmaker Penny Lane premiered her Creative Capital project, NUTS!, about a Great Depression-era doctor who claimed to have cured impotence by implanting goat testicles into his patients. In making the film, Penny has been considering truth-telling and how documentaries are affected by dramatic story telling and creative editing. Today, she launched NOTES ON NUTS!, a footnote-like website that offers a critical look at her film NUTS! as well as documentary-making itself. Penny sent us this essay on the continuation of her project.

Trust is paramount in nonfiction. Your audience needs to trust that you’re honoring the documentary promise—the promise to in some essential way tell the truth—and so does your subject. That trust is your most valuable currency. Violating it is a tricky business­­.

What I want to suggest today is that the practice of annotation is a powerful act of transparency that nonfiction filmmakers might adapt to great effect.

By creating NOTES ON NUTS!, a database of over 300 footnotes tied to my Creative Capital project NUTS!, I had the idea that I could create one case study in order to instigate a whole new conversation: what would happen if documentary filmmakers started to regularly use footnotes?

This is meant as a provocation to my field, maybe even a call to action. Certainly a call to debate. I hope people will look at NOTES ON NUTS! critically. It is a kind of pioneer work; its flaws will be instructive to the next filmmaker who dares tread here.

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