ArtPrize announces 6 artists invited to Project 1

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The theme of Project 1 by ArtPrize will be “Crossed Lines,” and the public art exhibition in Grand Rapids will feature a collection of installations examining the ways public and private spaces are separated.

The theme was announced Thursday, along with the six artists invited: Amanda Browder, Heather Hart, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Olalekan Jeyifous, and Paul Amenta and Ted Lott.

Organizers haven’t yet said where any of their pieces will be displayed, but we do know they will be scattered throughout Grand Rapids, including outside the typical downtown boundaries of the ArtPrize competition.

Browder, of Brooklyn, New York, is known for wrapping buildings in huge textile artworks. This summer, she’ll ask community members to donate fabric and host events during which they can help create the pieces that will be installed here.

Hart, also of Brooklyn, builds structures that resemble mostly submerged buildings with only their roofs still visible. They double as stages.

Lozano-Hemmer, of Montreal, Canada, focuses on interactive art that blends architecture and performance. He’ll make something new and site-specific for Project 1.

The last individual artist is Jeyifous, born in Nigeria and now also working in Brooklyn. He’ll be creating a monumental sculpture about housing discrimination and urban inequity.

The only team invited is that of Amenta and Lott, both of Grand Rapids. Amenta is well known at ArtPrize: He helps run the SiTE:LAB venue, a perennial jurors’ favorite. Lott has worked with him at SiTE:LAB before. Their piece will be an open architectural space that will be entirely accessible, inspired by the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. It will also serve as a stage for events.

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Project 1 said the “Crossed Lines” theme is meant to reflect “the complex conditions of Grand Rapids, a place with a rich legacy of public art defining and enhancing civic space, yet still confronted with difficult questions about access and boundaries, both visible and invisible.”

“The exhibition seeks to explore thresholds and intersections of many types — aesthetic, political, social — that result in the harmonies, tensions and unexpected outcomes that make a city what it is,” Artistic Director Kevin Buist said in a statement. “When people, places and points of view cross one another it causes friction, which is the root of both conflict and creativity.”

The artists were picked by Buist and a curatorial advisory committee.

Project 1 will run from Sept. 7 to Oct. 27. There will be events, educational programs and performances.

It’s taking the place of the ArtPrize competition, which will return for its 11th year in 2020.

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