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DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities Announces New Community Funding and Public Art Awards

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities (DCCAH) is pleased to announce new award recipients for the 2014 Community Funding Request and Public Art Building Communities programs.

“At the heart of our mission is the support of high-quality artists and arts and humanities organizations,” said Judith Terra, Chair of the DCCAH. “We know how critical these organizations and individuals are in making our city great, and these awards go a long way in supporting the outstanding work that they do."

“The projects that these awards will support will have a lasting and meaningful impact to District residents,” said Lionell Thomas, Executive Director of the DCCAH. “They contribute to making our city a wonderful place to live, work and play.”

The Community Funding Request is for projects that use the arts and humanities to demonstrate significant impact on District residents through high quality arts programming. The Community Funding Request was created as a means to support Commission-initiated opportunities and/or activities. The Community Funding Request is an opportunity for DC-based nonprofit organizations to apply for up to $20,000. This year’s recipients include festivals, strategic planning and new programming for public spaces.

The Public Art Building Communities Grant is available to individual artists and organizations to create and install temporary or permanent public artwork that enhances District neighborhoods. Individuals may apply for up to $50,000 and Organizations (501c3) may apply for up to $100,000. Organizations are required to provide a one to one cash match.

Eligible projects include, but are not limited to the following: sculpture, mosaics, artistic streetscape improvements, murals, paving patterns, video installations, custom benches, stained glass windows, artistic gates and railings.

Funding is available for all fees associated with the design, fabrication and installation of the artwork(s) including artist fees, materials, insurance, engineering, shipping, fabrication and installation services, permits, copyright registration, plaque and dedication costs and photographic documentation. Both Community Funding Request and Public Art Building Communities requests are reviewed through an independent panel process, similar to other grant programs. Panels are comprised of individuals with expertise in arts management, community needs and artistic discipline.

FY14 Community Funding Request Awards

Center for Black Equity, Ward 1
DC Black Pride 2014, $7,300

DC Black Pride (Black Lesbian & Gay Pride Day, Inc.) is a 24 year-old community event that takes every place every Memorial Day weekend in the District of Columbia to celebrate and acknowledge the Black LGBT community through the arts and humanities, health information dissemination and social events. Over 15,000 Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer identified men and women come out to participate in the oldest Black Gay Pride event in the world. DC Black Pride uses the literature, film, dance and music to bring to life to the experiences and cultural richness of the Black LGBTQ community in Washington, DC. DC Black Pride is one of the few community events that has created a safe space to showcase Black LGBT spoken word artists, dancers, writers, musicians, writers and playwrights, etc. DC Black Pride has set the tone for community building and cultural expression for over fifty Black LGBT Pride events.

National Center for Creative Aging, Ward 3

The Creative Age: National Leadership Exchange & Conference on Creative Aging, $20,000

From June 10-14, 2014, National Center for Creative Aging will hold its first conference on creative aging convening national state, and local leaders at premiere arts venues across DC. Core activities include: 1) Creativity Matters!  The Basics in Program Development: Pre-conference on capacity building for artists and arts administrators to learn and share effective practices, program design, implementation, evaluation and resources. 2) The Main Conference Day will showcase programs from around the world focusing on DC artists and arts organizations including a performance at Arena Stage by Liz Lerman. This leadership exchange will produce asset mapping of programs and services in the arts for older populations. 3) Encore! Artist Training on Arts and Aging: Post conference for workforce development will re-tool teaching artists to work with older people across settings including home, education, health and aging services. It will support Age Friendly DC priorities in Social Participation, Respect, Social Inclusion, Public Spaces.

H Street Main Street, Ward 6
Starburst Intersection Programming, $10,000

H Street Main Street will activate the Starburst Plaza Intersection by provide free arts and humanities programming to the community. The regularly scheduled events will encourage pedestrian activity throughout the historic Trinidad, Old City and Langston Carver neighborhoods. By curating this new experience, the Starburst Plaza will begin to be seen as a gathering place for families, a venue for local artists and economic stimulus for neighborhood businesses. Programming will include local performing artists, public art, visual and media artists.

Shakespeare Theatre Company, Ward 6
Audience Research Project, $20,000

The Shakespeare Theatre Company will lead a consortium of Washington, DC theatres to conduct an Audience Research Project that will analyze current audience trends and determine region specific strategies for audience recruitment and development. The Audience Research Project will take place in three organized phases and will culminate with a presentation of key findings and potential action steps for the consortium. The outcomes of the project will benefit the entire region as the consortium will share all findings with arts organizations throughout the DC Metropolitan Area in effort to build the audience development and retention strategies of the entire local performing arts industry.


Public Art Building Communities Awards

National Museum of Women in the Arts

Project Description: Installation of 14 contemporary/monumental sculptural works that will be on exhibit on the major thoroughfare of 12th and 13th Street and New York Avenue NW.

Project Title: New York Avenue Sculpture Project: Magdalena Abakanowicz

Lead Artist: Magdalena Abakanowicz

Award: $80,000 (1:1match required)

Installation Location: Median of New York Avenue between 12th and 13th Street NW.

Ward: 2

Installation Type: Temporary (2 years)

Note: NMWA’s public exhibition of Abakanowicz works will include abstracted human figures and birds in flight: Walking Figures; birds from her Uccello series, and Second Never Seen Figure on Beam with Wheels.


Kristina Bilonick

Project Description: Six artists will be selected to create temporary art installations in the windows of both existing businesses and storefront windows to beautify George Avenue (2620-3218 Georgia Avenue NW)

Project Title: George Avenue Window Walk

Award: $9,500

Installation Location: 2620-3218 Georgia Avenue NW

Ward: 1

Installation Type: Temporary (2 years)


Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington

Project Description: Collaboration with the Smithsonian’s Museum of African Art to create two identical video installations and mural projects that will be both mounted and displayed at the organization.

Project Title: Bringing The Smithsonian To The Boys & Girls Clubs

Lead Artist: Joel Bergner (create elaborate Mural backdrops)

Associated Artist: Mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves, music/libretto and orchestration by Tony Small, Film/photography by Roman Romano, an expose of indigenous Omani/West African Percussionists directed by Victor Provost and choreography by Lion King’s Ray Mercer, Installation Manager Lemon Brown

Award: $75,000 (1:1 match required)

Installation Locations:

Smithsonian National African Art Museum 950 Independence Avenue SW, Ward 1
Boys & Girls Club of Washington (Clubhouse #14) 4103 Benning Rd NE, Ward 7

Installation Type: Permanent (5 years)

World Premiere and Live Filming to culminate the project will be hosted by the Kennedy Center on September 25, 2014


Stephon Senegal

Project Description: Installation of a large-scale public art in the Langston Terrace Dwellings using the neighborhood adolescents as the primary subject matter to draw upon the culture and history of the neighborhood. Seventeen prints will be created.

Project Title: The Sunu Gaal Project

Award: $48,855

Installation Location: Mounted onto steel frames within the courtyard of the Langston Terrace.

Ward: 5

Dimensions: 10 feet x 20 feet and 10 feet x 10 feet

Installation Type: Temporary (4 months)


Washington Projects for the Arts

Project Description: Installation of a contemporary rotating series of 40’ x 20’ banners onto the Capitol Skyline Hotel that will rotate every 2 months (artwork by three artists)

Project Title: South Capitol Street Gateway Public Art Project

Lead Artist: Jacolby Satterwhite, Julie Wolfe and Ellington Robinson

Award: $22,500 (1:1 match required)

Installation Location: Façade of the Capitol Skyline Hotel, 10 I ST SE

Ward: 6

Installation Type: Temporary (1 year)


Nekisha Durrett

Project Description: Production and Installation of a (16’x54’) large scale mural onto the south-facing brick wall at 3301 Georgia Avenue NW.

Project Title: "Fall in Line"

Award: $50,000

Installation Location: 3301 Georgia Avenue NW (Parkview Community)

Ward: 1

Installation Type: Permanent


About the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities

The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities provides grants, professional opportunities, education enrichment, and other programs and services to individuals and nonprofit organizations in all communities within the District of Columbia. The Arts Commission is supported primarily by District government funds and in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.