East Ninth art project seeking youth proposals; $1,000 to be awarded for each project

photo by: Nick Krug

East Ninth Street in East Lawrence is pictured on Jan. 27, 2018.

Organizers of the East Ninth Street art project are seeking young artists who want to add their artistic touch to the East Lawrence neighborhood.

The East Ninth Project has already awarded grants to fund 10 artist proposals from adults, including sculpture, film and musical projects, and is now seeking youth proposals. Five $1,000 grants are available for youth projects, and applications are currently being accepted, according to a news release from the project team.

Project facilitator Mandy Enfield said in an email to the Journal-World that the project team was keeping the project open to any ideas that kids may have. She said the project team required only that the project be accessible to the public and that the kids get guidance from adults throughout the process.

“I foresee us also working with kids on their projects to refine them and provide them with a learning experience that will prepare them to better apply for public art projects in the future,” Enfield said.

Young artists who want to apply for the grants will need a mentoring adult to support their projects and assist with the financial aspects of the grant, according to the news release. However, if an applicant does not have an adult mentor available to help, the project team will provide someone.

The project is being funded by a $500,000 ArtPlace America grant that was awarded to the Lawrence Arts Center in June 2014. When originally proposed, the plan generated community debate and some concerns from neighbors, and it was ultimately scaled back. Originally, the art was to be designed and installed in tandem with the city’s street and walkway improvements along East Ninth Street, but the projects are now being done separately.

Young artists can make art individually, as part of a group or through their school, according to the request for proposals. Projects can be in any medium and can be permanent, temporary or event-based, but must be in a public place where people can see or experience them.

Enfield said that, given the amount of the youth grants, she didn’t necessarily expect a permanent installation but that all permanent or temporary art installations would be in the general area of the East Lawrence neighborhood.

The request for proposals states that the project team encourages young artists with roots in East Lawrence to apply and that the team is committed to attracting creative youth from diverse artistic and cultural backgrounds. Artists interested in applying for the grant need to complete an application, which can be done at the Lawrence Arts Center or via the project website, rebuildingeastninth.com.

Applications are due Nov. 25, and projects will be selected Dec. 11. All art projects and installations for the East Ninth Project must be finished by May 1, 2020.


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