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Greenwood Art Project Participation Expands Nationwide; Arts, Academic Professionals Contribute Essays to Catalog

This article was archived on 11/22/2020

Participation in the Greenwood Art Project is expanding nationally, with arts and academic professionals from across the United States contributing essays to the project catalog. The Greenwood Art Project is developing a catalog of artists, artworks and essays. The catalog will be available for purchase next year in coordination with the art exhibitions; more details will be announced later.

The Greenwood Art Project seeks to raise awareness of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre and destruction of its thriving Black community in the historic Greenwood District that included Black Wall Street, one of the most prominent Black-owned business districts in the United States during the early 1900s. The Greenwood Art Project also celebrates the resilience, healing and recovery of the community, with new resonance in today’s challenging times.

Twenty-two Tulsa- and nationally-based writers are contributing essays for the catalog that will accompany the 34 commissioned public art projects in 2021, a commemoration of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre.

Greenwood Art Project sought and commissioned several writers, academics and poets from various institutions throughout the U.S. These institutions include the Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center in Oklahoma City; Whitney Museum of American Art and Sugar Hill Children’s Museum of Art and Storytelling in New York, N.Y.; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Perez Art Museum and Little Haiti Cultural Center in Miami, Fla.; the African American Museum in New Orleans, La.; the Mississippi Contemporary Art Center in Jackson, Miss.; and Coleman Center for the Arts in York, Ala. Several serve as faculty and/or curators at the University of Delaware, New York University, Rice University, Columbia University, Spellman College, Tulane University, Michigan University and Pratt Institute.

Three of the writers – one from Oklahoma and two from New York – are contributing to the introductory part of the catalog. They are Christina Beatty, manager of public programs at the Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center in Oklahoma City; Adrienne Edwards, a curator at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, N.Y., also co-curator of the 2021 Whitney Biennial, and Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts, an assistant professor of writing at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, N.Y., and author of “Harlem is Nowhere: A Journey to the Mecca of Black America” (Little, Brown & Co. 2011).

More details about the writers’ contributions to the Greenwood Art Project catalog can be found online at www.greenwoodartproject.org and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/greenwoodartproject  and Instagram at www.instagram.com/greenwood.art.project  Watch for periodic updates. 

Greenwood Art Project is an initiative of the 1921 Tulsa Massacre Centennial Commission. It is funded by a grant from Bloomberg Philanthropies. In 2019, Bloomberg Philanthropies announced an award of $1million to the City of Tulsa and the Greenwood Cultural Center through its Bloomberg Philanthropies Public Art Challenge. The George Kaiser Family Foundation also has contributed $200,000 to the Greenwood Art Project.

Artists chosen to participate in the Greenwood Art Project were announced in June 2020. See www.greenwoodartproject.org

About the Public Art Challenge:

In February 2018, Bloomberg Philanthropies invited mayors of U.S. cities with 30,000 residents or more to submit proposals for temporary public art projects that address important civic issues and demonstrate an ability to generate public-private collaborations, celebrate creativity and urban identity, and strengthen local economies. 

More than 200 cities applied for the 2018 Public Art Challenge with proposals reflecting diverse artistic mediums addressing a range of pressing issues and social themes such as community development, environmental sustainability, cultural identity, and immigration. 

Five cities won the Public Art Challenge: Anchorage, Alaska “SEED Lab,” Camden, New Jersey “A New View,” Coral Springs in partnership with Parkland, Florida for “Inspiring Community Healing After Gun Violence: The Power of Art,” Jackson, Mississippi “Fertile Ground,” and Tulsa, Oklahoma for “The Greenwood Art Project.”


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