“Bower,” Lynn Basa, 2012, University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls
Are you interested in winning public art commissions but find yourself overwhelmed by the application process? Many public art projects begin with an RFQ, or request for qualifications. Answering an RFQ with a compelling letter of interest is crucial to advancing past the initial stages of selection. Each letter you submit should be specific to each project. The following frame for writing an effective letter of interest is drawn from Lynn Basa’s Creative Capital webinar, Demystifying Public Art. Register for the next session, happening December 17, 7:00-8:30pm EST.
Specifically address your interest in the project. Refer to the RFQ, but be careful not to just reword what it says. Your letter of interest should show that you understand what the agency or selection committee is looking for, that you feel an affinity for it and that you took the time to do some research. Continue reading
Katrín Sigurðardóttir, “Supra Terram,” 2015. Installation view at Parasol unit foundation for contemporary art. Photo: Jack Hems; Courtesy of Parasol unit.
Katrín Sigurðardóttir (2015 Visual Arts) is premiering her Creative Capital-supported project with “Supra Terram,” a site-specific installation at Parasol unit in London. Supra Terram (from the Latin term for ‘going above ground’) is a large grotto-like sculpture that extends through the ceiling of Parasol unit’s ground-floor gallery into the gallery space above. I connected with Katrín to learn more about this project and her ongoing exploration of duality and shifting perspective in sculptural installations.
Jenny Gill: Much of your work is site-specific and architectural in nature. Can you talk about the interplay between sculpture and architecture in your work?
Katrín Sigurðardóttir: I am primarily interested in the notion of place, and place is manifested in natural or man-made topography. I use architectural techniques and technologies to describe places; I am less interested in architecture as a means to solve problems, spatial or functional. And even if I am of course concerned with how materials build up, I see this as a basic concern in sculpture. I don’t know if I approach materials or structure in the same way an architect would. Continue reading
Raoul Hausmann – ABCD or Portrait de l’artiste from Silvia Kolbowski’s art blog
If you’re a writer who focuses on contemporary art, you know that money for your craft is hard to come by. Sadly, even for some of the best arts writers out there, this can affect the time and effort one has to put into writing books, articles, essays and blog posts. With this in mind Creative Capital and the Warhol Foundation got together in 2006 to launch the Arts Writers Grant Program. The Arts Writers program really believes that quality writing deserves to have good funding behind it, and that this can change how writing about the arts is discussed, perceived and even made. The grants range from $15,000 to $50,000 to individual writers in five categories: Article, Blog, Book, New and Alternative Media, and Short-Form Writing. The program is currently accepting applications through May 21st!
What kind of arts writing does the Arts Writers Grant Program typically fund? After nine years, it’s pretty clear that there is nothing typical in this field! Continue reading
Remember those zoetropes you had as a kid showing the silhouette of a galloping race horse? Baltimore artist Eric Dyer has developed the concept of this pre-cinema device to stunning results. For his Creative Capital project, Short Ride, he is building a massive tunnel you can walk through with thousands of moving parts. We interviewed Eric during his recent exhibition at Ronald Feldman Fine Arts. To learn more about Eric Dyer and Short Ride, click here.
Ken Gonzales-Day, “Hands Up,” 2015. Chromogenic print.
Ken Gonzales–Day (2012 Visual Arts) will premiere his Creative Capital-supported project with the solo exhibition, Ken Gonzales–Day: Run Up, on view at Luis De Jesus Los Angeles from April 4 through May 9, 2015. Run Up is the latest chapter in Gonzales–Day’s acclaimed Erased Lynching series, selections of which have been acquired by the Smithsonian Institution, the Norton Museum of Art and numerous private collections, and exhibited in museums and galleries in Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, London, Paris, Vienna, Mexico City and other major cities. I connected with him to learn more about this timely project.
Jenny Gill: Your past work has involved a lot of archival research, exploring histories of racial profiling and racially motivated crime. These issues have really come to the forefront in the past year with the shootings of Trayvon Martin in Florida, Michael Brown in Ferguson, and other police violence. Did this body of work shift in response to those current events?
Ken Gonzales-Day: The work is directly informed by recent events but my research on vigilantism and lynching began in 2000. The early research looked at the lynching of Mexicans and other people of color in California as a way of expanding our understanding of the history of lynching in the United States, and to more accurately reflect its impact in the American West. My book, Lynching in the West: 1850-1935 (Duke, 2006) included over 350 cases of lynching and vigilantism in California and was able to document the many communities of color that were touched by this history. This new series of works grew out of that research but it is also responding to both the similarities, and the differences, between lynching and the kinds of racialized violence that are occurring today. Continue reading
Wave & Particle: A group exhibition celebrating Creative Capital’s 15th anniversary
February 14 – March 21, 2015
Ronald Feldman Fine Arts
31 Mercer Street, New York, NY 10013
Open Tuesday – Saturday 10am-6pm; Monday by appointment
Reception: Saturday, February 14, 6-8pm
Brent Green - To Many Men Strange Fates Are Given, 2014
Kelly Heaton - The Surrogate of Live Pelt
Chris Doyle - Bright Canyon [video still], 2014
Ken Gonzales-Day - Wallpaper
Quintan Ana Wikswo - Fieldwork, 2014
SuttonBeresCuller - ON/OFF, 2013
Patty Chang - Invocation for a Wandering Lake, part 1 [film still], 2014
Edgar Arceneaux - Spock, Tuvak, Tupac, 2006
Sam Van Aken - Idiot Moon, n.d.
Janine Antoni - If I Die Before I Wake (mother's hand meets daughter's hand in prayer), 2004
Matthew Moore & Braden King - Cumulus (Fragment 01), 2015
Featuring Creative Capital Awardees: Janine Antoni, Edgar Arceneaux, Heather Cassils, Patty Chang, Julia Christensen, Chris Doyle, Eric Dyer, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Ken Gonzales-Day, Brent Green, Kelly Heaton, Shih Chieh Huang, Jennie C. Jones, Brian Knep, Simone Leigh (featuring Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts), Jennifer & Kevin McCoy, Matthew Moore with Braden King, Carlos Motta, Jeanine Oleson and Laurie Jo Reynolds and Jean Casella, Karyn Olivier, Jason Salavon, Gregory Sale, Miriam Simun, Jesse Sugarmann, SuttonBeresCuller, Sam Van Aken, Quintan Ana Wikswo (list in formation)
Sharon Louden teaches at the Chautauqua Institution.
This winter, artist Sharon Louden hosts her first four-part webinar series: How to Approach, Engage & Communicate with Galleries, Museums & the People You Want to Know. This series is now sold out, but stay tuned for information about more webinars with Sharon in the spring and fall! Interested in hearing about upcoming dates or joining the waitlist for this series? Email us!
Sharon is also the editor of the 2013 compilation, Living and Sustaining a Creative Life: Essays by 40 Working Artists, which offers realistic insight into how artists juggle their creative lives with the everyday needs of making a living.
We had the opportunity to ask Sharon five questions about how she manages to sustain her own practice, and what she’s learned along the way. Continue reading
Creative Capital is pleased to announce its 2015 awardees in the categories of Moving Image and Visual Arts, representing a total of 46 funded projects selected from a nationwide pool of more than 3,700 proposals. Drawing on venture-capital principles, Creative Capital seeks out artists’ projects that are bold, innovative and genre-stretching, then surrounds those artists with the tools they need to realize their visions and build sustainable careers.
The 2015 Creative Capital Artists are an incredible group of creative thinkers, representing 50 artists at all stages of their careers with an age range of 28 to 80 years old. They hail from 13 states plus Puerto Rico and Canada; more than half are women, and more than half identify as non-European American. Each funded project receives up to $50,000 in direct funding, plus additional resources and advisory services valued at $45,000, making the organization’s total 2015 investment more than $4,370,000. Continue reading
Amie Siegel - Heavy Metal
A multi-element moving image work exploring the intertwined histories of nuclear reactors, uranium minds and Native American land.
Anna Sew Hoy - Psychic Body Grotto
A sculptural installation of bronze "grottos" enlarged from spontaneous gestures in clay.
Gala Porras-Kim - The Mute Object and Ancient Stories of Today
Examines the link between an undesciphered script found on Mesoamerican artifacts and the development of a standardized dictionary for the Zapotec language in Oaxaca, Mexico.
Lorraine O'Grady - MBN - 30 Years Later
The artist's performance persona, Mlle Bourgoise Noire, transforms into a new avatar who protests a money-driven art world to restore the cultural purpose it has lost.
Danielle Dean - Trainers, Part 2
A multi-channel video work, performed and reworked by community members in the Alief neighborhood in Houston, that uses language from Nike commercials and political speeches to investigate how advertising shapes subjects.
Heather Cassils - The Resilience of the 20%: Monument Project
A series of bronze monuments, cast from the artist's attacks on 2000-pound clay blocks and placed at sites where acts of violence towards gender nonconforming people have occurred.
Carolina Caycedo - Be Dammed
An interdisciplinary project investigating the effects that large dams have on natural and social landscapes in several American bio-regions.
A.K. Burns - Negative Space
A multi-channel video installation that presents a surreal narrative of bodies in transition and their relationship to nature, technology, territories and resources.
Travis Wilkerson - Blood Relations
A documentary murder mystery examining the complexities of a racially-charged crime in the filmmaker's own family history.
Dan Schneidkraut - Vore King
A detailed character study of R.P. Whalen, world famous horror host, trash movie guru, carnival sideshow barker, and America's premier purveyor of vorarephilia fetish pornography.
Jon Rubin - The Sitcom
An experimental, transnational sitcom set and shot both in Tehran and Los Angeles, repositioning the conflict and cultural misrepresentation that characterize U.S./Iranian political relations into the absurdist sphere of a domestic comedy.
Jennifer Reeder - As With Knives and Skin
A deadpan glimpse into the lives of both teenagers and adults during the aftermath of a young girl's disappearance in a rural, racially diverse town in Ohio
Carlo Ontal - Kitoko Ya Kolela
A performance piece, series of photo and painting exhibitions, and film drawing on a photojournalist's experience in the Congo.
Jillian Mayer & Lucas Leyva - #PostModem
A multi-platform narrative culminating in a satirical sci-fi pop musical about a girl who frees futuristic Miami from corporate powers with the help of viral videos.
Lily & Honglei - Shadow Play: Tales of Urbanization of China
A multimedia installation that utilizes animation and emerging technologies to visualize the metamorphosis created by urbanization in China.
Velez, Ivan - The Ballad of Wham Kabam!
A series of five interconnected comic books that use the tropes and style of the classic superhero genre to tell the story of America's multicultural history.
Wu Tsang - Duilian
A film project exploring the legacy of historical Chinese poet and revolutionary Qui Jin (1857-1907) through a "queer lens," considering Western and non-Western LGBTQ identity constructions.
Katrin Sigurdardottir - Supra Terram
A large-scale installation in which a cave-like structure intersects a building on two levels and redefines the architecture of the building with its volume.
Carrie Schneider - The Readers
An installation of 50 film-based portraits of influential women authors, activists, critics, artists and poets immersed in the act of reading.
Beatriz Santiago Muñoz - Verano de Mujeres
A feminist ethno-fiction based on the visionary world-view and sensorial experiences of a group of women in R'o Piedras, Puerto Rico.
Jeanine Oleson - A human(e) orchestra
An ever-changing "orchestra" that uses a range of noises, from conventional music to speech acts, to produce compositions around agreed-upon issues or audiences in need of "music."
Brittany Nelson - Alternative Process
A series of large-scale digital prints examining the materials of alternative process photography through the artist's experimentations with raw photo-chemical materials.
Narcissister - Organ Player
A feature-length experimental art film based on, and elaborating on, the artists' acclaimed performance of the same name.
Jon Kessler - The Time Was Now
An immersive sculpture and video installation dealing with the inevitable march of time.
Titus Kaphar - Jerome Project
An interdisciplinary investigation into the criminal justice system through the lens of the common and traditionally African-American name, Jerome.
Eric Gottesman - The Oromaye Project
A series that takes assassinated Ethiopian novelist Baalu Girma's Oromaye as the point of departure for a transnational participatory public photography project.
Mariam Ghani - What we left unfinished
A collaboration with Afghan filmmakers to examine unfinished state-sponsored films during the years of Afghan Communism (1978-1991) as records of fleeting iterations of the Afghan state, and imagine new narratives from the fragments.
Maria Gaspar - Out of Field
A series of outdoor visual and sonic installations on the West Side of Chicago that bring experiences and narratives from Cook County Jail out into the neighborhood that surrounds the detention facility.
Abigail DeVille - The Bronx: History of Now
A series of 100 site-specific sculptural installations constructed from found objects, fragments of histories and community narratives to tell the story of the present moment in the Bronx.
Mike Crane - UHF42
A 90-minute television program filmed entirely within the confines of an independent television station in the West Bank.
Lee Anne Schmitt - So That I May Come Back
A non-traditional documentary based on the case of Mary Bell, who was 11 years old when she was convicted of killing two small boys in England.
Ry Russo-Young - The Family Movie
A narrative feature film based on the true story of the artist's known sperm donor suing her lesbian mothers for visitation and paternity rights when she was nine years old.
Shawn Peters - The Art of Dying Young
A series of short films that "re-memorialize" young men who were previously memorialized with death murals in Brooklyn; the films, which incorporate augmented reality technology, are intended to be accessed and viewed on smart phones at the site of the memorial ritual.
Lorelei Pepi - Vigil
An interactive installation that uses facial tracking technology to encourage viewers to engage with and stand vigil for animated representations of "the Other."
Pat O'Neill - Drift, Wait, Obey
A multi-screen video installation that presents imagery drawn from life and radically restructured using digital technologies.
Nathan Lotfy - Fire
A feature film following fruit vendor Mohamed Bouazizi in the days leading up to his symbolic act of self-immolation, which sparked the Tunisian revolution and the subsequent Arab Spring.
Jeff Malmberg & Chris Shellen - Teatro
A documentary about villagers in a small Italian farming town who preserve their heritage and confront their community issues by turning their lives into a play.
Shola Lynch - Harriet: Live Free or Die Trying
A narrative film about an unlikely but true action heroine Harriet Tubman
Andy Kropa - Hacking Alzheimers
A wearable system that aims to improve the quality of life for people affected by Alzheimer's disease and dementia by using perpetually-recording cameras as an aid to memory.
Klip Collective - Vacant America
A series of videos projections on vacant structures that draw on submitted stories and imagery to uncover physical residues and memories of each forgotten space.
Maryam Keshavarz - The Last Harem
A feature film set in 19th-century Persia that follows a rebellious cross-dressing musician and her romance with the boy-king Nasir.
Lauren Kelley - Holiday Way
A stop-motion animated video series based on fictional narratives set on or around major holidays.
Christopher Harris - Speaking In Tongues
An experimental, hand-processed 16mm film inspired by Ishmael Reed's novel "Mumbo Jumbo."
Cherien Dabis - No End in Sight
An immersive cinematic experience that follows the story of a young Muslim woman taking part in the Egyptian revolution.
Martha Colburn - Western Wilds
A stop-motion film based on popular stories about the American West written by German author Karl May in the 1890s.
Michael Almereyda - The Happy Man's Shirt
A series of linked short films adapted from Medieval Italian folktales, remained in contemporary settings.
Today, we announced the 2015 Creative Capital Artists in Moving Image and Visual Arts. We could not be more excited about the 46 new funded projects—an incredibly diverse group hailing from 13 states plus Puerto Rico and Canada. We’ve arrived at this day thanks in huge part to the work of our valued colleagues who help us select each group of Creative Capital Artists. While we worked with more than 100 consultants during the ten-month process, two consultants advised us during the entire award round, reviewing submissions at every stage. I asked Mike Plante (Programmer at the Sundance Film Festival and our Program Consultant for Moving Image) and Dean Daderko (Curator at the Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston, and our Program Consultant for Visual Arts) a few questions about what it was like to work with Creative Capital on the process.
Lisa Dent: What motivated you to work with Creative Capital as a Program Consultant for this award round?
Mike Plante: Everyone wants to help artists and filmmakers make a project but it’s difficult to know how to actually do it. Creative Capital has made the blueprint. It’s rare to give filmmakers and artists money with few strings attached, but that is exactly what CC does. To be part of a process that finds amazing artists across the country, discuss their ideas and the path they are on – and to then give them not only financial help but real-world advice about balancing work and life. It’s really a dream project.
Dean Daderko: My motivation is pretty simple: I know of no other funding body that is as forward-thinking, as deeply generous, or as profoundly invested in being responsive to artists’ practices as Creative Capital. They fund the projects other organizations wouldn’t even consider! The end game here isn’t a substantial check—their commitment begins well before artists reach this stage, and continues throughout the life of the project, and beyond! Creative Capital understands fundamentally that by working with artists as partners—and by providing not just money, but thought, time and rich reserves of resources and connections—that they can positively and productively shape the future. Their unconventional and deeply responsible approach gives artists an incredible amount of agency, and they’re invited to bring their creative approaches to innovating and developing a game plan that’s uniquely responsive to the goals and concerns of their projects. The success they’ve had with this artist-centric strategy speaks for itself: so many artists will tell you what a dream it is to work with Creative Capital. Of course it doesn’t hurt that the staff are some of the friendliest, most helpful, and well-connected people around either! Ruby Lerner is my hero! Continue reading
Still from Janine Antoni’s “Touch.”
We’re gearing up for a busy winter at Creative Capital, as we prepare to announce our 2015 class of Visual Arts and Moving Image Awardees this Wednesday and to open our application for Emerging Fields, Performing Arts and Literature grants in February. I caught up with Ruby Lerner (Creative Capital’s President and Executive Director) and Lisa Dent (Director of Resources & Award Programs) to reflect on our original mission, the projects that have astonished us over the years and why we continue to support risk-takers.
Maura Guyote: Creative Capital has always been committed to supporting artists with singular visions who dream up ambitious projects and aren’t afraid to take risks. Can you talk about why that mission is important?
Ruby Lerner: In any field, if you don’t have experimenters, you don’t have progress. Think about the medical field. We’d still be using leeches if there hadn’t been experimentation and research. So experimentation is really critical for any field to move forward. It’s imperative. In the arts we see a lot of risk aversion, so there need to be portals where risk is honored and appreciated. Not all risks will succeed but we need people to stand behind the risk takers and that’s a role we’ve created for ourselves. Continue reading