Berkeley, CA — Cal Humanities has recently announced the 2014 Community Stories grant awardees. Kala Art Institute has been awarded $10,000 for Sue Mark’s interdisciplinary project entitled “Communities’ Crossing: Echoes Along Historic Route 123.” Sue Mark’s project is among six artist-led Print Public projects, a new Kala community initiative bringing multiple partners together to create art installations, print kiosks, pop-up projects and other innovative acts of culture along San Pablo Avenue where Oakland, Emeryville, and Berkeley come together.
Community Stories is a competitive grant program of Cal Humanities. Grants are awarded to projects that give expression to the extraordinary variety of histories and experiences of California’s places and people to ensure that the stories can be shared widely. These narratives help us find our commonalities, appreciate our differences, and learn something new about how to live well together.
“Communities’ Crossing” blends neighborhood stories with image and text-based signage to be used in improvisational dance interactions along San Pablo Avenue, one of the Bay Area’s oldest existing transit routes, to explore community identity. This dynamic, transitioning region is grappling with impacts of change. Local history and current social concerns will reach the community as a ‘sidewalk theater’, collapsing the delineations of audience and participant. Sue Mark of the marksearch team, crafts provocative platforms to explore social relationships. Since 2000, marksearch has collaborated with non-profits, community groups, students, historians, urban planners, and municipalities worldwide to create projects that move beyond aesthetic experience. Their nomadic investigations interweave community stories with neighborhood history, the built environment, and the ecosystem to reveal innovative narratives.
“With our state’s incredible diversity, fostering communication and connecting people to a range of ideas is vital for our general welfare,” said Ralph Lewin, president and CEO of Cal Humanities. “Our grant award enables awardees to pursue the important work of engaging new audiences in conversations around stories of significance to Californians.”
Since 2003, Cal Humanities has supported approximately 400 story projects and granted nearly $3 million to enable communities to voice, record, and share histories—many previously untold or little known. Through video, photography, murals, zines, documentary theater, audio projects, and more, these collected stories have been shared with broad audiences, both live and virtual. Cal Humanities is an independent non-profit state partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities. For more information on Cal Humanities, please visit www.calhum.org.
Print Public is an innovative place-making project bringing Kala Art Institute and multiple community partners together to create art installations, print kiosks, pop-up projects and other innovative acts of culture along San Pablo Avenue in West Berkeley. Artist-teams are developing distinct projects within the San Pablo Avenue transit corridor, creating an arts-integrated approach to urban planning and community activation. Visit Print Public online to learn more.
Print Public Artists: Sue Mark (marksearch), Susan O’Malley, Taro Hattori, Taraneh Hemami, Swell (Ali Naschke-Messing and Helena Meryman), and Imin Yeh
Events and programming scheduled along San Pablo Avenue throughout 2014–2015
Gallery Exhibition: May 7–June 27, 2015