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artplace awards grant to bass museum of art

June 12, 2012

Miami Beach and Wynwood Arts District to Get New Infusion of Funds for Creative Placemaking, Thanks to ArtPlace Grant

ArtPlace releases 47 grants supporting creative placemaking initiatives in 33 communities nationwide

Miami, Fla (June 12, 2012) – Public art, safer streets, new gallery and studio space for artists are coming soon to the City of Miami Beach and Miami’s burgeoning Wynwood Arts District, thanks to a substantial grant from ArtPlace announced today.

“The Miami projects receiving ArtPlace funding exemplify the best in creative placemaking,” explained ArtPlace’s Carol Coletta.  “They demonstrate a deep understanding of how smart investments in art, design and culture as part of a larger portfolio of revitalization strategies can change the trajectory of communities and increase economic opportunities for people.”

One notable ArtPlace grant goes to the Bass Museum of Art in Miami Beach receiving $225,000 for “TC: Temporary Contemporary,” a public art projects program that will bring recognized contemporary artists to create temporary, site-specific artist projects within the City Center/Arts District, a roughly 40-block district located within the South Beach area of Miami Beach.

The program is intended to activate the urban landscape with art, surprising and engaging residents, visitors and passers-by with outdoor works of art in unexpected places. Sculpture, murals, sound installations, video and other interactive works of art, will interrupt people’s daily routines and encourage thoughtful interactions with the city and its communities. Public art becomes a catalyst to appreciate the unique character of Miami Beach.

The Wynwood Arts District is a once desolate neighborhood of roughly 96 city blocks located just north of downtown Miami that has been undergoing unprecedented transformation through the visual arts over the past decade. Owing to the recent, global economic downturn and the sheer size of the arts district, Wynwood has seen increases in crime even as the district attracts more visitors. The Wynwood Arts District Association (WADA) sees the creation of a BID as key in improving the walkability and safety of the neighborhood and establishing the Wynwood district as the epicenter of the arts and creative businesses in Greater Miami.

WADA will receive a $140,000 grant from ArtPlace, a new national collaboration of 11 major national and regional foundations, six of the nation’s largest banks, and eight federal agencies, including the National Endowment for the Arts, to accelerate creative placemaking across the U.S. To date, ArtPlace has raised almost $50 million to work alongside federal and local governments to transform communities with strategic investments in the arts.

“Across the country, cities and towns are using the arts to help shape their social, physical, and economic characters,” said NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman. “The arts are a part of everyday life, and I am thrilled to see yet another example of an arts organization working with city, state, and federal offices to help strengthen and revitalize their communities through the arts. It is wonderful that ArtPlace and its funders have recognized this work and invested in it so generously.”

ArtPlace is making another investment in the Wynwood Arts District in the form of a $385,000 grant to The Light Box at Goldman Warehouse. Funding will support the activation and stabilization of the multidisciplinary cultural center, which supporters call a true home for artists in the community. This 12,000 square foot space includes a shared workspace, a flexible 150-seat theater, an ample rehearsal room, galleries and shared meeting space.

ArtPlace received almost 2200 letters of inquiry from organizations seeking a portion of the $15.4 million available for grants in this cycle.  Inquiries came from 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, U.S. Virgin Islands.

In September, ArtPlace will release a new set of metrics to measure changes over time in the people, activity and real estate value in the communities where ArtPlace has invested with its grants.

Participating foundations include Bloomberg Philanthropies, The Ford Foundation, The James Irvine Foundation, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, The McKnight Foundation, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The Rockefeller Foundation, Rasmuson Foundation, The Robina Foundation and an anonymous donor. In addition to the NEA, federal partners are the departments of Housing and Urban Development, Health and Human Services, Agriculture, Education and Transportation, along with leadership from the White House Office of Management and Budget and the Domestic Policy Council. ArtPlace is also supported by a $12 million loan fund capitalized by six major financial institutions and managed by the Nonprofit Finance Fund. Participating institutions are Bank of America, Citi, Deutsche Bank, Chase, MetLife and Morgan Stanley.

A complete list of this year’s ArtPlace awards can be found at artplaceamerica.org.

Video: Susan Philipsz | By My Side, 2009 | Two-channel sound installation 3 min, 5 sec, played every 5 minutes | Courtesy of the artist and Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, New York

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