• RebuildingEastNinthTeam

Yay! Youth Corps!

12/28/19- As the Rebuilding East Ninth project enters its second year, it has completed all selections with the final 5 awards going to young artists. All voices are important to this work and that includes youth voices. Their imagination and creativity will enrich this project as a whole and contribute to the future of public art in Lawrence. Of the $330,000 in project funds that will go directly into the hands of Lawrence citizens, this $5,000 might be the best investment of all!

“I won’t pretend to know how to figure this return on investment, but we know investment in the arts yields 5x or more for the community and investing in our youth is much the same. When you read the proposals, you can’t help but be impressed by the incredible insight, vision, and values these projects embody and know that this investment is going to return to us, not only financially, but by building an inclusive, thoughtful, and caring culture for our town.” -Mandy Enfield, Project Coordinator

The Project Team selected 5 “Youth Corps” pieces, created by teens, to take place between now and May 30th. As with all 9th Street projects, artists were asked to embrace project values acknowledging diversity, honoring place, and celebrating history. Here are the selections:

Artist: Jahnava S.

Project: Embrace the Change will be a contemporary ballet to “Shake it Out” by Florence and the Machines and is a commentary on the complexity of change experienced individually, and collectively. Jahnava says, “This piece is about how we have to let go of the things that are holding us back and how change can be scary. East Lawrence has gone through so much change and struggle throughout its history and has adapted so well.”

After creating costumes, creating choreography, and 3 months of weekly rehearsals, Jahnava will perform her piece in late April in the lobby of the Lawrence Arts Center.

Artist: Jude B.

Project: Apotheosis will be a sculpture created from colorful plastic waste with a goal to bring awareness and change to the growing problem of plastic pollution. Jude will reach out to the community to gather materials and will also meet with Resident Specialists to learn community history.

Expect to hear from Jude about collecting your colorful plastic waste next month and look for a completed sculpture in late April.

Artist: LK Ultra

Project: LK Ultra! (gets an EP) will produce a professional EP for this East Lawrence band who has built a name on activism through strong youth voices. The band was formed in 2017 at Girls Rock Camp and has since worked hard to contribute positively to the local music scene, advocate for marginalized people, and give back by volunteering at the camp. Their EP will allow them to share their voice and art outside of Lawrence. “We feel like we have it in us to influence the rest of the world.”

Songs will be released in March with a release party and show in late April.

Artist: LMCMS History Club

Project: East Lawrence Bus Bench will be a functional piece of artwork depicting images of East Lawrence history and filling the great need for bus benches throughout our community. Each club member will interview an individual from the neighborhood to inspire the imagery.

The project will culminate with an unveiling and potluck dinner in late April.

Artist: Hang 12

Project: Art Box will be much like a “little free library” filled with art. Eleven teen artists from Lawrence Arts Center’s Hang 12 program will build and stock the Art Box with 2D and 3D works. This all-ages, inclusive art vehicle will create community connections, inspire creation, and build new relationships among artists. “Hopefully, the Art Box would inspire others to create and connect because of its existence and in turn we would want more art boxes in Lawrence.”

Blueprints will be available in the box so plan to build your own after this project launches with a community event in late March.

All project progress will be shared via blog posts on the Rebuilding website, Facebook, our email list, the ELNA email list, and the LAC email list.

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After seven years, the Ninth Street Project is finally coming to a close. While this project has been historic and unprecedented in many ways, we WILL encounter similar challenges in the future. Pleas