Queen City Soup – Artists & Projects July 2012
Proposal 1 – April Denée
BUSK! (a documentary) & Buskapalooza Street Performance Festival
PROJECT SUMMARY: BUSK! is a character-driven documentary about how an emerging cultural center like Charlotte, NC can and should encourage street art and performance. With an inquisitive and playful spirit, the film follows four local street performers – breaking stereotypes and encouraging people to appreciate and support art that reaches beyond the walls of a gallery, theater, or concert hall. Buskapalooza is a street performance festival that was held twice last year and will be held again this year, in conjunction with the premiere of BUSK! Last year, each festival featured 50-100 artists (including musicians, dancers, magicians, jugglers, balloon twisters, painters, and sketch artists) performing on public sidewalks in Uptown Charlotte for four hours straight. This project is fiscally sponsored by Aubin Pictures, a NYC not-for-profit (501c3) media production company, and was awarded a 2011 Regional Artist Project Grant from the Arts & Science Council.
FUNDING USE: Funds awarded from this grant will be used for DVD production (approx. $500 for authoring, packaging, shipping), Buskapalooza materials (approx. $200 for fliers, signage, badges), and premiere screening costs (approx. $300 for venue rental, signage). If I’m able to receive any of these items at a discounted rate, remaining funds will be applied toward submission fees to local, regional, and state film festivals.
CHARLOTTE IMPACT: The chief goals for this project are educational in nature. Many local artists have expressed a desire to busk but have been hesitant for fear of breaking city laws. Both the documentary and festival help these artists learn, experience, and feel comfortable with these laws. The project also encourages teamwork among artists, lawmakers, law enforcement, and the public toward more vibrant streets as well as greater support and appreciation for the local arts community.
TIME FRAME: The documentary is now in post-production. The first cut of the film will be completed by September, final editing (color correction, sound editing, scoring, etc) by October, and the premiere screening and street festival by November. Exact timing of the premiere and festival will be determined in conjunction with Charlotte Center City Partners, which manages the uptown event schedule. By December, DVDs will be ready for distribution, and the film can begin screening around Charlotte as well as in other cities that could benefit from its message. Progress updates and press/media appearances are regularly posted on the project’s website (http://buskmovie.com) and Facebook page (http://facebook.com/buskmovie).
ABOUT YOU: April Denée was born and raised in the Charlotte-metro area. In 2010, she formed March Blake Media, a multimedia company that has produced video, print, and online media for clients such as the Arts & Science Council, The Charlotte Observer, Charlotte Magazine, and Charlotte Viewpoint. As a filmmaker and writer, April has the technical expertise to shoot and edit a full-length film, the research and interview experience to know what questions to ask and how to get answers, the organizational skills to plan and execute large-scale projects, and the storytelling ability to find the most compelling narrative threads and character arcs. Prior to forming March Blake Media, she spent seven years as a marketing professional and college instructor. April holds an MA in English and a BA in Psychology.
Proposal 2 – Phil Thomas
The Kissing Project
PROJECT SUMMARY: ‘The Kissing Project’ will consist of various black and white photographs of two subjects kissing. A wide range of two subjects, from an owner and its pet animal, interracial and same-gender couples, older couples, to kids giving a peck, and anyone in between, will be bound through the innocence of a kiss. The subjects in the photos will all be North Carolina residents – anyone willing to participate – allowing the audience of the project to take part in the process of production.
The photos will be printed as posters, roughly 3’ x 3’, and posted at public display locations, walls of vacant buildings, and store windows that are willing to participate – anywhere that can be seen, while also not damaging any property. The specific geographical area that will be covered is to-be-determined once the amount of posters the grant money can purchase is determined, but generally it will include areas immediately surrounding the Charlotte Metropolitan area (i.e. Dilworth, Noda, South End, Elizabeth, the West Side, etc.)
FUNDING USE: The funding from the micro-grant will be used to pay for the expenses confronted in the printing of the images; including: service fees, paper fees, adhesive materials, and any other fees associated with the printing of the posters.
I have been in contact with two different printing agencies in the Charlotte area (High Tech Signs and Heritage Printing) that are willing and capable to print the size of prints, as well as the type of paper needed for the project.
CHARLOTTE IMPACT: Over my time spent in Gastonia and Charlotte, Savannah GA, and NYC throughout the last six years, as well as the recent passing of Amendment One, the strong hold of racism and ignorance still existing in our country have asserted themselves as prevailing issues that need to be addressed.
Charlotte, as anyone familiar with the area knows, is not isolated from this.
While the city may be progressing at the level of technological advancement and ecological sustainability, it has yet to start the climb towards confronting confrontational topics (or rather, confronting them in public), specifically through its arts. This is not to say that the people of Charlotte have nothing to say, there is much to say. But the foundations have yet to be established, and the path yet to be paved to the microphone. Metaphors aside, I believe this project can lead the way, by example, by confronting and provoking conversation of topics of the utmost relevance.
Relevance in the sense that we are entering a new century. Much will change, and while the technology of Charlotte is advancing through whatever means of support, it is the responsibility of the arts to address the social issues needed to progress the mind of the culture.
TIME FRAME: The Kissing Project will begin immediately once I secure the funds. The preparation is quite simple:
1.) Take pictures of a wide variety of subjects.
2.) Print pictures on large printers
3.) Find locations to display prints. ( i.e. anywhere willing to participate, vacant buildings, public display locations, etc.)
The images will be posted 3-4 weeks before the Democratic National Convention (Sept. 3-6), and continuing up to the event. Initially, I would like for the photos to be seen without the complete distraction of any craziness that comes with the convention. However, the convention will bring the spotlight on Charlotte. Having the project in full effect when the spotlight is on the state can show anyone watching that the citizens of North Carolina are willing to question their most deep-seeded beliefs, and the art community is willing to step up to its responsibility and provoke the conversation.
To keep Queen City Soup, Project Art Aid, and anyone else interested in the progress of the project updated, I will be setting up a blog with up-to-date posts and pictures of the project, as well as general information on what The Kissing Project is about.
ABOUT YOU: I am an artist currently living in Cramerton, NC. I have a studio consisting of my parents garage, and half of my bedroom. I attended the Savannah College of Art and Design for one year, from Fall 2010 to Spring 2011, completing the majority of my foundation requirements. I took a leave of absence from SCAD that fall, planning on returning in the winter. I lived and worked in New York City from August to December 2011. During my stay I met many wonderful and creative people, as well as being introduced to art I didn’t know existed or had a name. Needless to say, funding, as a well as my own mentality, changed, and I decided not to return to SCAD, but come back to North Carolina to live and work. My plan at the moment is to apply to colleges in the fall of 2012 and play the following year by ear. Other than that, I am working on any and all projects I can fit in the garage.
Proposal 3 – Carmella Jarvi
Water through glass: One artist’s exploration.
PROJECT SUMMARY: I’m fascinated with glass. Last year, I finally tried glass to portray water. Rose Hawley began teaching me at her “Art in the Dairy” studio. Like many artists, I have multiple jobs and I stopped the lessons because time and money were spread thin.
My art is at a pivotal point, stretching into an abstract exploration of water. My paintings are becoming highly textured and less realistic. But, my primary desire is to explore water through glass.
I’m known for my women in water paintings. Until last summer, my water experiences were swimming pools and natural sources on the East Coast. It was then I visited Playa del Carmen, Mexico and everything shifted. I want to capture the intense color and light of the water there.
Glass is a great way to capture the true nature of water’s color and light. I would love to work with Rose over one or two weeks, without the worry of money.
FUNDING USE: Receiving $500 for one week, or $1000 for two, would relieve some financial pressure and give me a small project budget to work with.
Specifically, I would use the monies to to cover the cost of working with Rose and the supplies I will need. Any extra funds would go towards marketing my new glass work with others.
CHARLOTTE IMPACT: The work I have been doing over the last couple of years connecting artists and business has enlightened me. I am an artist, but also an entrepreneur and curator of the Gallery at Packard Place, where I’m bringing previously unrelated groups and individuals together.
Being able to start a new body of work – in a new medium – matters because I connect people and help other artists with networking opportunities. This year, through the Arts & Science Council, other art groups – and now the Gallery at Packard Place – I am making big strides in bridging the art and business communities. (Over the years, I’ve worked with many artists to help improve their marketing message – their branding. Now, I am selling other artists’ work through the Gallery at Packard Place.)
However, it all comes with a personal cost to me and my art. As passionate as I am about business and helping others, I am also an artist. My art and personal creative outlets have definitely taken a back seat to my business projects this year.
Receiving a Queen City Soup micro-grant would give the artist in me a booster – some internal inspiration – that would sustain me as I forge this new path of connecting art and business in Charlotte.
With or without this grant, I’ll continue my business plans and making new art – including eventually getting back to glass. Yet, receiving it at this time would give me the gift of an inspiring glass art residency in my home town.
TIME FRAME: The time frame would be late summer/fall. Ideally, I’d like one or two weeks of consecutive days to explore water through glass in-depth. However, realistically, it may take longer due to work obligations and the nature of glass (pieces must be assembled, fired, trimmed and additional firing with clear glass to finish). It might work better for the one or two weeks to be distributed over one or two months.
I will share my experience with Rose Hawley in her “Art in the Dairy” studio, through many venues, including social media – facebook, twitter, my blog and LinkedIn. After the work is completed, I’ll invite all micro-grant and project supporters out for an “Art in the Dairy” private tour and preview of my new glass pieces.
There would be plenty of sharing through Packard Place. Not just my project, but others would have opportunities too. Either way, I’d love for the Gallery at Packard Place to partner with Project Art Aid and the Queen City Soup initiative.
ABOUT YOU: I’m an artist, teacher and entrepreneur. I was a public school art teacher until I left to pursue my own dreams. I love water, painting, marketing and working with others and have explored figures in water for decades.
Through a series of events, residencies and unsuccessful public art applications, my secret desire to explore water with glass has grown. Finally, last summer, I broke down and began working with Rose. I’ve won a variety of artist grants and residencies. Among other things, I am a McColl Center for Visual Art alumni and two-time Regional Artist Project Grant recipient. As the first curator for the Gallery at Packard Place, I get to combine my passions for art and business, while being part of something new and innovative in the heart of uptown.
Like many artists, I delight in teaching. I have participated in business of art training and shared marketing through local groups – including the Arts & Science Council – as well as through private consulting.
Proposal 4 – Jose Vazquez (Winner of July’s $780 micro-grant)
” Five Dollars for My Story ” (Homeless in the Homeland)
PROJECT SUMMARY: VIDEO PROJECT – DOCUMENTARY: GO TO ORGANIZATIONS,SITES AND AREAS WHERE HOMELESS PEOPLE GATHER. PAY THEM $5.OO AND FILM THEM INDIVIDUALLY WHILE THEY TELL THE STORY OF THEIR LIFE EXPLAINING HOW OR WHAT GOT THEM THERE, WHAT DREAMS DID THEY HAVE AT THE BEGINING OF THEIR LIFE, WHAT DREAMS DO THEY HAVE NOW, WHAT CAN THEY GET WITH FIVE DOLLARS. DO THEY HAVE TALENTS? ( PAINTING, SINGING, ACTING, ETC.) AND WILL THEY BE INTRESTED IN SHOW THOSE TALENTS AT THE END OF THE SHOWING OF THEIR FILM. WILL BE SHOT WITH THREE CAMERAS ONE SHOOTING IN COLOR (STILL) FROM A PROFILE ANGLE, ANOTHER (ALSO STILL) FROM A 3/4 PROFILE ANGLE ALSO IN COLOR AND THE THIRD ONE SHOOTING IN BLACK AND WHITE “FLOATING” AND MOVING AROUND.
FUNDING USE: TO BUY TWO DIGITAL VIDEO CAMERAS AND A MICROPHONE AND TO PAY THE FIVE DOLLARS TO THE PEOPLE PARTICIPATING IN IT.
CHARLOTTE IMPACT: BECAUSE WE SEE THOSE PEOPLE IN FRONT OF US ALL THE TIME; AT TRAFFIC LIGHTS, DOWNTOWN, UNDER THE BRIDGES,SLEEPING ON PARK BENCHES, BUT…DO WE REALLY SEE THEM?
EACH ONE OF THEM WAS CRADLE ONCE IN THEIR PARENTS ARMS WITH HOPES AND DREAMS JUST LIKE WE WHERE…SO WHAT HAPPENED? AND DO WE CARE? WE, YOU KNOW, THE ONES WITH A HOME AND A BLANQUET.
TIME FRAME: 15 TO 30 DAYS, AND I CAN E-MAIL YOU VIDEOS TO SHOW YOU THE PROGRESS OF THE PROJECT.
ABOUT YOU: MY NAME IS JOSE G. VAZQUEZ (YES, WITH A “Z” AFTER THE “A”) I WAS BORN IN THE NORTH OF MEXICO, I MOVED TO CHARLOTTE IN 1996. I PAINT, WRITE POETRY, PROSE AND SHORT STORIES, I’M A PHOTOGRAPHER ( I WON 1st PRIZE IN THE 2008 “RADIOVISION” CONTEST BY THE NPR RADIO STATION 90.7 WFAE, HERE IN CHARLOTTE). IN MEXICO I MADE THE VIDEO “MUERTO EN VIDA”(DEAD IN LIFE)ABOUT HOMELESS PEOPLE LIVING IN CEMETERIES. I DO CONSIDER MYSELF NOT AN ARTIST BUT AN ARTISAN. MY ART(PAINTINGS AND SCULPTURES) IS MADE MOSTLY FROM FOUND MATERIALS. I DO BELIEVE THAT THINGS, JUST LIKE PEOPLE, DESERVE SECOND CHANCES. I CAN’T SING OR DANCE.
Proposal 5 - Sydney Duarte
Coexistance – The world is at your fingertips ♥
PROJECT SUMMARY: I would like to create a 15ft. rotating globe that people could spin to view all of the amazing countries that are out there. Each country will have a small door, inside would be a picture of locals wearing traditional attire and facts about the country. One of the things I appreciate most about traveling is the immediacy in which decisions and consequences play out. Also, the fact that these happen among strangers who don’t have any responsibility towards each other. There are rare moments that you meet someone who is on the same page as you and you feel like you’ve lived a lifetime together. Sometimes, you find a soul mate and it doesn’t matter if you never see them again, the experiences that you share together are unforgettable. Each country has held new friendly faces, incredible destinations, amazing experiences, new traditions, languages and memories. I’ve found myself in wonderful and unexpected company and I want to inspire others to get out there and embrace the beautiful souls that they connect with along their life journey.
FUNDING USE: I will use the QC SOUP grant funding to purchase materials for this project
CHARLOTTE IMPACT: I have picked up many tips and tricks along the way about culture, history, mannerisms, food and language. Each time I travel to a new country the locals that I meet are usually under the impression that Americans are uniformed about the World that lies beyond the US borders. I would like to help change that preconceived notion and help educate and inspire the locals and Charlotte visitors about the World around us. I think this would be a wonderful way for the community to embrace other cultures and give them a chance to look at life in a whole new perspective… possibly inspire them to travel to a new place and bring back to new traditions to expand and brighten our community.
TIME FRAME: The time frame for my project would be 4-6 months. I will share updates via:
Website - http://travelinggypsyadventures.wordpress.com
YouTube - http://www.youtube.com/user/duartesydney
Instagram – traveling_gypsy Instagram – traveling_gypsy
ABOUT YOU: I am an Adventurer, Photojournalist, Humanitarian, Nomad in love with distant & uncharted places. Doing random acts of kindness to inspire and better as many lives as possible by volunteering and doing humanitarian work as I travel the globe. The people of everyday life that I bump into along my journey are the ones that influence my art. I enjoy all people, every size, shape and color. Open minded, happy, good hearted, spontaneous people that don’t expect anything in return but the pure pleasure of each other’s company…There are so many things that I want to explore, and slowly I am conquering each of my goals. I am not positive where I will end up, but am anxious to find out. I will continue to do my best and to live each day as if it were my last, meeting new people and learning about the world around me. Life was meant to be lived. Curiosity meant to be kept alive. The fatal thing is rejection. One must never, for whatever reason, turn their back on life.