For Immediate Release
Seshat Y. Walker
DeanwoodxDesign Project Director
D.C.’s Historic Deanwood neighborhood receives an
ArtPlace Arts and Culture Temporium Grant
Washington, D.C. – June 1, 2012 –The D.C. Office of Planning (OP) has awarded a $75,000 “ArtPlace Arts and Culture Temporium” grant to Partners for Livable Communities (Partners) to develop and manage pop-up temporiums in underutilized spaces in the Deanwood neighborhood, one of the District’s earliest African American communities located in Northeast Washington.
Under this grant, Partners will manage DeanwoodxDesign, a project developed by Deanwood residents and cultural activists Seshat Walker, Donna Davis, and Kimberly Gaines. DeanwoodxDesign showcases the rich arts, cultural, historical, and green space assets of neighborhood and Ward 7 through a community-wide, intergenerational, and collaborative effort.
This project is part of the OP’s ArtPlace series that includes Temporiums in the emerging creative neighborhoods of Anacostia, Brookland, and upper 14th Street NW. “These projects are an unprecedented opportunity to develop new national models for assisting communities with integrating artists while supporting ongoing local efforts in economic revitalization, community development, and job creation,” said Kimberly Driggins, Associate Director of City Planning.
DeanwoodxDesign will feature workshops, exhibitions, and cultural events that reflect the theme of “design” from four unique aspects: community, sustainability, multimedia, and lifestyle. A grassroots team will work alongside neighborhood and citywide collaborators to coordinate more than 15 hours of free programming and events during a four-month period with a kick off scheduled for early July.
DeanwoodxDesign will engage artists and a diverse network of Deanwood institutions and stakeholders to cultivate community pride, showcase and create great art, and invigorate the creative economy.
“At the core of DeanwoodXDesign is our diverse group of collaborators,” said Project Director Seshat Walker. “Their generous spirit and unwavering support help drive the project.”
Collaborators include Cultural Tourism DC, Deanwood Heights Main Streets, East River Family Strengthening Collaborative, IDEA Public Charter High School, George Washington University Event Management Program, Life Pieces to MasterPieces, The Fishing School, Word, Beats, and Life, Inc., and WeAct Radio.
“We’re empowering residents to leverage their existing cultural resources and build sustainable partnerships to develop new energy,” said Bob McNulty, President of Partners. “Cultural strategies are not only a major economic force in many communities but contribute tremendously to education, cultural identity, race relations, quality of life and other, less quantifiable but important, social functions.”
DeanwoodxDesign is calling for artists to be featured in exhibitions on the themeDeanwoodxDesign: Designing Life through Art. The theme focuses on community, lifestyle, and sustainability. We are encouraging artist from Deanwood, Greater Deanwood, and Ward 7 and 8 to apply to the call by June 20th. This call also invites artwork made from repurposed and recycled materials. The call for artists is available at www.deanwoodxdesign.com.
“I am truly excited about this project. The city needs to know about the wealth of art and culture that resides in Deanwood, this a great start,” said Kimberly Gaines, DeanwoodxDesign’s Creative Director.
For more information, contact DeanwoodxDesign Project Director Seshat Y. Walker, email@example.com
ArtPlace is a collaboration of nine of the nation’s top foundations, eight federal agencies including the National Endowment for the Arts, and six of the nation’s largest banks. ArtPlace supports creative placemaking with grants and loans, research and advocacy.
The District of Columbia Office of Planning
The Mission of the Office of Planning (OP) is to guide development of the District of Columbia, including the preservation and revitalization of our distinctive neighborhoods, by informing decisions, advancing strategic goals, encouraging the highest quality outcomes, and engaging all communities.www.planning.dc.gov/DC/Planning
Partners for Livable Communities
Partners for Livable Communities is a non-profit leadership organization working to improve the livability of communities by promoting quality of life, economic development, and social equity. Since its founding in 1977, Partners has helped communities set a common vision for the future, discover and use new resources for community and economic development, and build public/private coalitions to further their goals.