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Memory, Myth, and Metaphor

Memory, Myth, and Metaphor

Memory, Myth, and Metaphor is a FREE, 5-week series for women and femmes only, that will explore the themes of memories, myths, and metaphors while exploring topics such as the body, self-presentation, and gender roles.

Join us for the first segment of the series in a special meetup with shehive. This meetup will include a dialogue about identity in the craft fields of wood and metalworking. Together, we will create pieces that explore a multi-faceted self. Bring materials that inspire you.

The following items will guide our conversation:

-article on gender construction:

-article on women and power tools:

-website for a women-centered space:

-article about Vivian Beer:

Facilitated by Brittany Rudolf.

Brittany Rudolf is serving as a Public Ally with Big Car Collaborative for the 2016-2017 term. A graduate of Herron School of Art and Design with a BFA in Furniture Design and Sculpture, she combines her various creative interests with a love for people.

shehive is a grassroots project based in Indianapolis creating spaces to deconstruct gender inequity. Meetups are informal, gender neutral gatherings to explore gender issues in pop culture. To learn more about the project, visit!

Reminder that shehive meetups are informal and gender inclusive gatherings to discuss gender issues in pop culture. Children ages 16+ are welcome. The conversation will not be censored.

*image by J.D. Hollis.

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Pop-Up Woodworking Workshop

Pop-Up Woodworking Workshop

Join us for a Pop-Up Woodworking Workshop led by teaching artist Brittany Rudolf.

ALL materials are provided. No previous experience is necessary, as we will use pre-cut pieces, so come in with an open mind and leave with a handpiece work!

This workshop is FREE and FAMILY FRIENDLY; however, space is limited and children 12 and under must be accompanied by an adult. Reserve your spot by clicking here!

Brittany Rudolf is a multi-disciplinary artist who is serving as Public Ally with Big Car Collaborative for the 2016-2017 term. A graduate of Herron School of Art and Design with a BFA in Furniture Design and Sculpture, she combines her various creative interests with a love for community engagement.

For more information and other inquires, please contact Brittany at email hidden; JavaScript is required.


The People’s 500

The People’s 500 is a celebration of the relationship between the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the people of Indianapolis, marking the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil. The exhibit will run through July 16.
In October of 2015, Sugarmann chose 100 residents of the Indianapolis community from a pool of applicants to drive two laps in a pace car — the drivers uniting to complete the equivalent of a single running of the Indianapolis 500. Sugarmann and his crew photographed and interviewed each of the drivers, the resulting documentation serving as the material of the exhibition. Some of the drivers are featured among the 16 large scale photos in the exhibit. There is also video, and a sculptural piece.
“The Indianapolis Motor Speedway serves as a cultural beacon within Indianapolis, a location of shared history and civic identity for all strata of Indianapolis society. Members of the Indianapolis community feel ownership of the Speedway,” says Sugarmann. “In this exhibit, the pace car is the vehicle through which this mutual connection is furthered, the civilian/citizen being able to immerse him or herself in the environment of a professional IndyCar driver. The People’s 500 uses pace cars to bridge the viewer and professional driver and create an even stronger sense of civic ownership.”
This exhibit is the first at Tube Factory, Big Car Collaborative’s new cultural center with a contemporary art exhibition area. Located in what was a boarded-up factory building on a residential street in the Garfield Park neighborhood, Tube Factory will host a variety of conversations, performances, and events — while also serving as the workshop and home base for Big Car artists.
The People’s 500 is curated by Shauta Marsh, funded by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and Creative Capital, and coordinated by Big Car Collaborative staff in partnership with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Framing provided by Editions Limited.

About Jesse Sugarmann: Sugarmann is an interdisciplinary artist working in video, photography, and sculpture. His work has been exhibited both nationally and internationally in venues such as the Getty Institute, Los Angeles; el Museo Tamayo, Mexico City; the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, Oregon; the Banff Center, Canada; el Museo de Arte Moderno de Santander, Spain; and both the Paris and Berlin installations of Les Recontres Internationales. Jesse’s work has been written about in publications including ArtForum, Art Papers, the Atlantic, Frieze Magazine, the Huffington Post, and The New York Times. Jesse lives and works in Bakersfield, CA. You can learn more about his work at

About The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts: The Foundation was established in 1987. In accordance with Andy Warhol’s will, its mission is the advancement of the visual arts. The Foundation’s objective is to foster innovative artistic expression and the creative process by encouraging and supporting cultural organizations that in turn, directly or indirectly, support artists and their work. The Foundation values the contribution these organizations make to artists and audiences and to society as a whole by supporting, exhibiting and interpreting a broad spectrum of contemporary artistic practice.

About Big Car: An Indianapolis-based 501c3 nonprofit, Big Car uses creativity as a catalyst to a better city. By providing and supporting unique, educational, participatory, playful and personal experiences, Big Car engages people of all ages and backgrounds in art making and creative problem-solving — inspiring them to be creative thinkers and involved, connected citizens. Learn more at and see examples of our projects at

About Creative Capital: Creative Capital supports innovative and adventurous artists across the country through funding, counsel and career development services. Our pioneering approach—inspired by venture-capital principles—helps artists working in all creative disciplines realize their visions and build sustainable practices.

About Indianapolis Motor Speedway: Established in 1909, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is the world’s largest spectator sporting facility and has long prevailed as an icon of motorsports excellence. After celebrating its Centennial Era in 2009-11, IMS and racing fans now look forward to the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race this year. In 2016, get ready for an unprecedented celebration of the human pursuit of progress as the world’s eyes turn toward the Speedway. For more information, visit


Flannelly’s of the Future Festival

To celebrate their marriage and the role music played in bringing them together, artists Brelyn Gerard and John Flannelly organized an experimental music festival. Flannellys of the Future Festival will take place April 30, 4-10 p.m. at Tube Factory artpace, 1125 Cruft St. Several musical acts were part the formation of their relationship so the pair wanted to share the music with Indianapolis by means of a free concert. The bands that will be featured are: Bad Psychic (Bloomington), DJ Littletown, Duncan Kissinger, Exploding Head Scene (Philadelphia, PA), Glitter Brains (Bloomington), Oreo Jones & Sirius Blvck, Jeron Braxton & the Tamagotchis (Bloomington), Rev//Rev (Lafayette), Rob Funkhouser, Sedcairn Archives, Skything (Marlboro, Vermont), Teen Brigade (Lafayette).

“Both of us are the kind of people who strive to view life from as many angles as possible, to feel from all those angles even if it means crawling around the floor of the house to feel the space usually reserved for our knees and ankles, or chilling in the bathroom for a shift in perspective,” says Gerard.

Many of the musicians in the festival were part of Gerard and Flannelly falling in love. Flannelly’s music was the first time experimental music clicked for Gerard. “Sitting in our friend’s living room, watching John deliver the experience of his art, I had an ethereal space to sort through my feelings. It was a space that somehow managed to be safe and challenging at the same time,” says Gerard. “After his set at Free House, he threw the flower he’d been wearing on his vest to the audience. I seized it. To this day, that flower still graces my bookshelf.”

Soon after that, on Valentine’s Day 2015, Gerard and Flannelly enjoyed their first date — at the Fountain Square music venue Grove Haus. Gerard sang back up for the band Memory Foam. She found out that Flannely had toured with one of her favorite bands, Shame Thugs, and that he was in the music video for her favorite Sirius Blvck songs. Eventually, Flannelly moved from Bloomington to Indianapolis into Gerard’s friend’s house. After a recommendation from their mutual friend, artist Erin K. Drew, Flannely got a job at the same place where Gerard worked.

“Now, we’re getting married and we’re doing it our way. With all the art projects in the community we’re involved with, neither of us are interested in fussing over centerpieces and flowers. We want to celebrate our love by sharing the music we love, made by the people we love,” says Gerard. “We can’t wait to groove with Indianapolis at the Flannellys of the Future Festival!”

Gerard has a new book, iForgot, out and Flanney a new album, Peace and Quiet now available. For their honeymoon after the festival celebration, the two will travel the country to promote their works.

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2016: Wow! look at what’s next

2016: Wow! look at what’s next

At Big Car, our art projects and programs include and serve people of all ages and backgrounds. We bring art to people with the purpose of sparking creativity and, building on that, helping improve quality of life. We strive, first and foremost, to connect and collaborate with people. Everybody deserves access to culture, creativity, and opportunities to spend time together in great public spaces and places.

Who are “we”? Twelve talented and creative staff members (eight full-time, four part-time), a dedicated and active board of directors, and a loose collective of additional artists and community leaders who contribute in a variety of ways to projects and programs. In 2016, this group is teaming up with many partners — with the support of an incredible group of generous local and national donors — to bring the following artist-led, community-based cultural experiences in Indianapolis:

Neighborhood Initiatives: Our place-based initiatives enliven places, leverage collective impact, and engage people with their neighbors, long term. Our next big project will focus our creative placemaking efforts in the heart of the Garfield Park neighborhood when we open our new, permanent exhibition area, workshop, and community space, Tube Factory. A critical expansion of our work in this neighborhood will be the creation of a community of affordable homes for artists (in partnership with Riley Area Development) near The Tube. Also in 2016, our Listen Hear sound art space and retail incubator will feature art exhibits and events and serve as home to our low-power FM community- and art-focused radio station. And our mobile outreach with the Wagon of Wonders will continue on the Far Eastside in collaboration with the Indianapolis Public Library’s Bookmobile and in a new area, the Near Westside, as part of the Local Initiative Support Corporation’s comprehensive creative placemaking effort, Great Places 2020. And we’ll be working on additional exciting creative placemaking projects with Near West and LISC in the spring and summer.

Creative Placemaking: Our design and facilitation of experiences, spaces and materials enables partners, neighbors, and other members of the public to identify and maximize their assets, tell a compelling story, build identity, and connect with each other. Building with Big Car — In summer 2015, 12 teens from the TeenWorks program — a summer employment and college readiness program serving low-income youth ages 15-18 in Marion County — were mentored by Big Car teaching artists. Teens experienced creative placemaking firsthand by working together to create furniture and sculptures made from invasive honeysuckle harvested from Bean Creek, an overgrown waterway in Garfield Park. They learned how to design, build, and paint the sculptures, many of which were used in the landscape design at Spark Monument Circle. In 2016, we’ll be working with TeenWorks to pilot our youth-oriented public programs at our new Tube Factory artspace workshop and in public places in the city. We continue to work as creative placemakers with Reconnecting to Our Waterways, a series of projects and programs that activate neighborhood areas near our city’s streams and rivers. And we’re excited to team up with artist Mary Miss and a variety of partners in support of the Streamlines art and science project also near our city’s waterways.

Citywide Collective Projects: Our citywide initiatives on livability foster a culture of innovation and generate creative energy in Indianapolis. Spark Monument Circle: With funding from a NEA Our Town grant in partnership with the City of Indianapolis, Big Car led an 11-week creative placemaking project in the city’s main public plaza, Monument Circle, invigorating the space with people-centric infrastructure and daily artistic and community programming reaching 45,000 visitors. The project featured 300-plus varied small events and happenings including weekly artist-led walks, musical performances, and opportunities to get creative. Check out all the numbers presented in a fun and graphical way here. In 2016, we plan to produce Spark again in partnership with the City of Indianapolis (details coming soon). Also, we’re excited to team up, this year, with Riley Area Development to commission a mural in a prominent place honoring Indianapolis poet Mari Evans who turns 97 this year. And, working with a variety of partners, we’ll again help bring TEDxIndianapolis back for its fifth year.

Please check out our year-end report and video if you missed all of the details on our 2015 accomplishments. It was a great year!

Now, we hope you can get involved with all that’s happening this year! Contact us at email hidden; JavaScript is required if you’d like to participate as an artist or volunteer. You can also help us bring art to more people by making a much-appreciated donation. And always just feel free to show up and enjoy yourself.

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Big Smiles: 2015 Year in Review

Big Smiles: 2015 Year in Review

While this year was one filled with some big transitions — including moving our home base to the Garfield Park neighborhood — we accomplished much as the city’s only full-time socially engaged art and placemaking organization. In 2015, we reached more than 30,000 people, provided part- and full-time work to more than 50 artists, sparked major investment in a long-overlooked area of the city, and helped bring vibrancy to several underutilized public places near our waterways and in the heart of Downtown.

But the most important outcome of our work was helping so many people feel happy while getting creative. We’re glad our projects brought smiles to people’s faces. We’re glad the free opportunities to celebrate and participate in art and play helped folks feel closer to each other. And we’re glad our events helped us all better appreciate this place we call home.

These important accomplishments — and the list below — were all made possible thanks to our donors and partners, board and staff, volunteers and neighbors, and artists and performers who brought their incredible ideas and energy into the mix. If you’d like to get involved, email us at email hidden; JavaScript is required. If you’d like to help by making a donation, it’s easy to do here.

2015 in video:

Here’s a chronological list of Big Car’s highlights from 2015:

At The Show Room and Listen Hear: This pair of pop-up cultural spaces in a mostly vacant retail strip in the Lafayette Square Mall area featured social practice art projects such as an instruction-based interactive show, a gallery in a bathroom, and a slate of sound art programming through May of 2015. Note: the Listen Hear sound art space concept will transfer to our new space in the Garfield Park neighborhood in early 2016.

Placemaking with Reconnecting to Our Waterways: With support via the Kresge Foundation, Big Car hired Alan Goffinski as the ROW Creative Placemaker. Alan and staff conducted placemaking workshops for artists and neighbors, and wide variety of eclectic outdoor public social events (from a flash mob in Broad Ripple, to a Day of the Dead celebration in Fountain Square, to a leaf jump along Fall Creek), drawing 450 people. Read more here.

Building with Big Car: Mentored by teaching artists, a dozen teens from the TeenWorks program experienced art and placemaking firsthand by working together to create furniture and sculptures made from invasive honeysuckle harvested from Bean Creek in the Garfield Park neighborhood, and painting sculptures to be used as part of parklet seating at Spark Monument Circle. See photos here.

Music at the Texaco: This ALL-IN Block Party drew 200 Garfield Park neighbors for live local music of many genres at a vacant former gas station, as a way of leveraging community pride, connections among neighbors, and economic development. A new, full-time commercial use of the old gas station is in the works. ALL-IN is a program of Indiana Humanities.

Garfield Alive Sculptures: Big Car collaborated with Friends of Garfield Park to develop interactive sculptures (shaped like abstracted vintage victrola record players) marking points of interest for an audio tour of the historic 128-acre park.

Wagon of Wonders: Designed collaboratively by Big Car artists on the platform of an ice fishing trailer from Minnesota, this mobile art gallery, pop-up public space, and mobile bait and tackle shop (used for Reconnecting to Our Waterways placemaking programming) features interactive art activities, a tiny library with a fold-out reading desk, and commissioned exhibits by Indianapolis artists Beatriz Vasquez and Casey Roberts. The Wagon reached 6,500 in its first six months.

Spark Monument Circle: With funding from the NEA via the City of Indianapolis, Big Car led an 11-week placemaking project in the city’s main public plaza, invigorating the space with people-centric infrastructure and daily programming reaching 22,000 residents, workers and visitors from around the world — while also testing out the city’s plans for a permanent renovation of the Circle area.

TEDxIndianapolis: Keep It Simple: For the fourth year, Big Car and our partners produced this day long-conference of ideas, at the University of Indianapolis, bringing in Australian placemaking expert David Engwicht to speak, among others. Attended by 500 people, the event included a Big Car-designed, simplicity-themed interactive exhibition at the UIndy art gallery for the entire month of October.

Southside Murals: On Indy Do Day in early October, Big Car engaged with Lilly Global Day of Service volunteers to paint two murals designed by nationally known Indianapolis artist Nat Russell, on two new Big Car buildings in the Garfield Park neighborhood, The Tube Factory artspace and Listen Hear. In November, Big Car teamed up with the Bates-Hendricks Neighborhood Association who commissioned Big Car’s Andy Fry to design and facilitate painting an underpass mural highlighting the neighborhood and its history.

5×5 Idea Competition at Tube Factory: In November, Big Car hosted its round of this arts ideas competition at Tube Factory artspace in the Garfield Park neighborhood — our first event in the building still under renovation. More than 200 people attended, hearing ideas for improving livability through art. A coalition of foundations provided the winning intergenerational team, Arts for Learning, with a $10,000 prize for their community story-gathering idea. We also gave the other presenting teams a $500 stipend.

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You can Help us Share the Joy of Art and Creativity Together!

You can Help us Share the Joy of Art and Creativity Together!

At Big Car Collaborative, we believe everybody should get to participate in making and enjoying art and vibrant public places. As artists ourselves, we know the thrill that comes from creativity, from spending time with people celebrating art and culture. We don’t want to bottle this up for ourselves. We’re determined to share.

Everyone, of all ages and backgrounds, should enjoy opportunities to get creative together with events and programs that are fun, affordable, and welcoming to all. We love it when this happens spontaneously — with people stumbling upon engaging, hands-on art activities and events in public spaces. Maybe they didn’t consciously set out in search of a creative experience. But when they find us doing something fun along a waterway, in a park, or at Monument Circle, people smile. And they stop and create, play, socialize, relax, and share.

With the support of many partners, generous funders — and individuals like you — we’re working to enhance public life. This is made of non-commercial and spontaneous social activities that happen at public spaces and places. This is what Spark Monument Circle and Service Center were all about. This is the essence of our work taking shape in the Garfield Park neighborhood. And this is what we’re doing every day as Indiana’s only nonprofit organization — and one of a handful around the world — dedicated, full-time, to helping improve life for people through placemaking and socially engaged art.

As 2015 draws to an end, please join us in celebrating our big year and please consider a making a tax-deductible donation to help us bring art to even more people in 2016. Thank you!

Also, please check out our 2015 year-in-review video.

Big Car's 2015 Year in Review from Big Car on Vimeo.

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Nov. 12 5×5 Indy finalists set

Nov. 12 5×5 Indy finalists set

On Thursday, Nov. 12, judges and audience members will award $10,000 to an idea for using art to strengthen community in Indianapolis at 5 x 5: Dream Indy. The event is the fourth of four 5×5 idea competitions this year, in which five finalists have five minutes and five slides each to pitch an idea. The event is presented by Big Car Collaborative, the University of Indianapolis Center for Aging & Community, and Joy’s House Day Adult Service, as part of the 2015 Spirit & Place Festival (whose theme is “Dream”).

The event takes place in the grounds of Big Car’s new Tube Factory artspace, at 1125 Cruft St. in Garfield Park. A team of judges selected five finalists from among 27 submissions. The five selected ideas address building neighborhood identity, crossing demographic boundaries, and building social capital:

presented by Danicia Malone and Tomm Roesch
Indiana is one of five states in the nation with no anti-hate crimes legislation. This public art project will combat microagressions with microaffections through an interactive typographic projection of text related to ethics and advocacy, and eight gramophones strategically positioned around the city that collect and project words of encouragement.

Open Music Indy: A Collaborative Concert Series
presented by Rob Funkhouser and Austin Senior
Open Music Indy is a concert series that would gather musicians (composers, songwriters, performers) from different Indianapolis communities to create new music and perform it free to the public. Collaborations would be designed to join audiences and artists that would not normally listen or perform together. The concerts would happen in all-ages public spaces and be used as a tool to foster relationships between musicians and music lovers of all kinds and to eliminate any perceived barriers, cultural, demographic, or otherwise, between them.

Neighborhood Stories
presented by Bob Sander and Alysah Rice
Neighborhood Stories connects Near Eastside residents, young and old, through storytelling and illustration. Visual artist Emily Kennerk will design a “Reader’s Chair,” a public artwork, to mark the site of monthly reading events, where community members can gather to share stories about their neighborhood, across generations. Workshops, sponsored by Arts for Learning, will be held at area schools for students to create books based on the stories collected and their own dreams for the community.

A Place to Call Home: Saint Clair Place and Neighborhood Identity
presented by Lukas Schooler and Beverly Roche
Through neighbor-driven interviews and tailored public workshops, NoExit Performance would work with youth in the Saint Clair Place neighborhood to create a unifying historic and/or social narrative for their neighborhood through interviews with residents. NoExit Performance and neighbors will devise a series of short performances that will debut at the annual Saint Clair Place Parade.

The Secret of Life Society
presented by Christopher M. Dance and Chad Hankins
The Secret of Life Society is a series of figurative public monuments depicting current community residents, selected through a voting process. The sculptures would include benches and information about the unique place where the monuments are located. The aim is to inspire hope through creating value and interest in public spaces and individual champions of neighborhoods.

Funds for 5×5 come from the Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF), the Efroymson Family Fund, the Christel DeHaan Family Foundation and Lilly Endowment Inc. The goal is to stimulate grassroots innovation in Indianapolis. This is the third year of the 5×5 program, in which $110,000 has been granted to 11 creative ideas.

At the Nov. 12 competition event, one idea will get $10,000 and the other four will receive $500. The panel of judges will select the best idea based on viability, community impact, creativity, intergenerational appeal. The audience vote counts as well.

The event is from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. and is free, with food and drink available for purchase. An RSVP is required.

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Big Car lands two major grants

Big Car lands two major grants

Two Indianapolis-based foundations recently announced major gifts to Big Car Collaborative for our Garfield Park Creative Community initiative. Our artist-led non-profit will use the funds to renovate and occupy two formerly vacant buildings in Garfield Park as community art spaces to leverage cultural and economic revitalization of the near southside neighborhood.

A $250,000 contribution from the Allen Whitehill Clowes Charitable Foundation will be used for renovation and furnishing of The Tube Factory artspace (above after 2015 Lilly Day of Service) at 1125 Cruft St., and Listen Hear, at 2620 S. Shelby St. A two-year $125,000 grant from the Nina Mason Pullman Charitable Trust will be used for staffing and programming when the two spaces open in early 2016.

Tube Factory is Big Car’s new permanent long-term home base featuring community gathering space, contemporary art exhibition area, and a cooperative workshop. Listen Hear is a venue for sound art and community radio, with a mini-laundromat and retail offerings. The Garfield Park Creative Community will also include affordable artist housing and art projects throughout the neighborhood in its next phase.

“We’re thrilled about these two major gifts and the impact this will have on our community,” executive director Jim Walker said. “The Tube Factory will be an anchor for a neighborhood full of art experiences. And it will give us a home base for placemaking and socially engaged projects around the city and beyond.”

The Allen Whitehill Clowes and Pulliam Trust grants add to the almost $800,000 already raised toward the $1.5 million goal. Supporters include a Community Development Block Grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development via the City of Indianapolis Department of Metropolitan Development ($466,000), the Efroymson Family Fund ($150,000), Lilly Endowment, Inc. ($50,000); Christel DeHaan Family Foundation ($35,000); Indianapolis LISC ($20,000), Howard Schrott and Diana Mutz, Ursula David, The Madeira Fund, The Nicholas H. Noyes Jr. Memorial Foundation ($10,000 each), and the Arthur Jordan Foundation ($2,500), as well as a major in-kind contribution from Blackline, the lead architect firm on the Tube Factory project. Riley Area Development Corporation is a key partner in the Garfield Park project as well.

Additionally, the Indianapolis Neighborhood Housing Partnership (INHP) invested $75,000 in Big Car and Riley Area Development’s housing initiative to refurbish vacant and neglected properties on Cruft Street as affordable live and work homes for artists who work with the public.

With Big Car owning its buildings, the Shelby Street corridor in the Garfield Park neighborhood is the permanent home and area of focus for the organization. Big Car works as an artist team embedded in Indianapolis neighborhoods to activate public space, engage artists and residents, and help transform the built environment as part a project called Garfield Park Creative Community. The goal is to make art and creativity integral to the culture of the neighborhood.

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7-part series to encourage placemaking in Indianapolis

7-part series to encourage placemaking in Indianapolis

By Big Car Collaborative staff

A series exploring creative approaches to revitalizing communities and improving public places runs from Sept. 15 to Oct. 21 in Indianapolis, with talks and workshops led by internationally recognized experts on placemaking. The series, which is free to attend, will benefit artists, designers, planners, developers, and other community leaders across sectors in the Indianapolis area.

Big Car Collaborative — currently teaming up with The City of Indianapolis on the Spark Monument Circle creative placemaking project — is organizing the series, called Rethink Reconnect Reclaim, in partnership with Reconnecting to Our Waterways (an ongoing collective-impact effort to improve Indianapolis streams and rivers), Indianapolis LISC, The City of Indianapolis, and several others. The placemaking series will help attendees learn about successful strategies and meet leading thinkers in the fields of environmental art, creative placemaking, and tactical urbanism. In pursuit of a better city, the idea is to bring people together to reimagine public spaces and draw new energy to the city’s waterways.

“This is a great opportunity for people to learn and share ideas together,” said Big Car executive director Jim Walker. “And we’re excited to help further strengthen partnerships as placemaking becomes a key part of community development and is integrated into the practice of more artists, designers and planners in our city.”

Other partners on the series include the Indiana Arts Commission, Love Indy, Indianapolis City Market, IndyGo, Harrison Center for the Arts and City Gallery, StreamLines, White River Festival, DaVinci Pursuit, Ball State University Department of Landscape Architecture, Indianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center (INRC), TEDxIndianapolis, and Spark Monument Circle.

“As we consider the future of Indy, it’s crucial that we put in the time and effort to creatively strategize about the future of our public spaces,” said Alan Goffinski, Big Car’s Creative Placemaker for Reconnecting to Our Waterways and lead organizer of the series. “There’s a lot we can learn from experts, and from each other.”

Details about Rethink Reconnect Reclaim:

Sept. 15, at 7 p.m. Flat 12 Bierwerks, 414 Dorman St. — 21 and over
In his project “Charting Pogue’s Run”, Sean Derry set out to memorialize our native waterway with a long, blue line and iron markers mapping the stream’s 1831 path. Derry will share his perspective and experience of completing such a massive public art project.

Sept. 16, 6:30-8 p.m. Spark Welcome Trailer, Monument Circle SW Quad
A 90-minute walk lead by Artist Sean Derry will take you along the historical but hidden banks of Pogue’s Run. Navigate old-timey maps along our modern city thoroughfares. Consider the value of creativity and natural resources in our modern cities.

Sept. 23 at 7:30 p.m. The Platform, 202 E. Market St.
This discussion with environmental artist Mary Miss offers insight into her work and creative process with a focus on her StreamLines project underway now in Indianapolis.

Oct. 9 at noon. Spark Welcome Trailer, Monument Circle SW Quad
During this casual brown-bag lunch, artists involved with Spark will discuss placemaking and projects that engage people before a brief walk around the Circle led by Big Car’s Jim Walker.

Oct. 15 at noon. Spark Welcome Trailer, Monument Circle SW Quad
With Spark: Monument Circle winding to a close let’s consider the impact of creative placemaking projects. Bring your lunch as Australian public space guru David Engwicht discusses the challenges and outcomes of creatively transforming our shared spaces.

Oct. 21, 11 a.m. -1 p.m. The Hall, 202 N. Alabama St.
This workshop invites artists to conspire for the good of their communities. Creative placemaking and tactical urbanism experts from Indianapolis, Miami and Australia will assist artists in developing creative interventions for public space along our waterways. Teams will then be commissioned to put their plans to action.

Oct. 21, 6:30 p.m. The Platform, 202 E. Market St.
David Engwicht is one of the world’s most inventive thinkers and writers on creating vibrant public spaces. Gain insight from his experiments in Creative Placemaking and explore how they relate to our public spaces in Indianapolis.


SEAN DERRY: In his artistic practice, Derry explores the lived experience of a place and investigates alternative strategies for inhabiting these environments. Derry’s work includes installations, public commissions and curatorial projects. He has developed projects for the Rivers of Steel Heritage Area, Trust for Public Land, National Institute for Fitness and Sport, and Waterman Agricultural Center. He has completed public commissions for the University of Alaska, the City of Indianapolis, and Indianapolis Cultural Trail. In 2006, Derry’s Charting Pogue’s Run was featured in the Americans for the Arts Year in Review.

DAVID ENGWICHT: Engwicht has over 25 years experience in placemaking. He is a passionate designer, artist, author, communicator, and social inventor, best known as the creator of the Walking School Bus. PPS in New York describe him as “one of the world’s most inventive thinkers on creating vibrant public spaces”. Nothing gives David greater joy than working with communities to breathe new life into dead spaces. He’s a 2015 TEDxIndianapolis speaker.

ANTHONY GARCIA: Garcia, a leader in civic advocacy in South Florida, is principal of the Street Plans Collaborative, and serves as part-time faculty at the University of Miami School of Architecture. He is a co-author Tactical Urbanism and a leading expert in short-term action for long-term change. He’s a 2015 TEDxIndianapolis speaker.

STUART HYATT: Hyatt a Grammy-nominated artist and musician who creates interdisciplinary media projects in the public realm. His work facilitates collaboration with people and places often overlooked by conventional contemporary art practice. Hyatt holds advanced degrees in both architecture and sculpture. He creates site-based work with M12, a collective known for creative projects related to rural cultures and landscapes.

MARY MISS: Miss has reshaped the boundaries between sculpture, architecture, landscape design, and installation art by articulating a vision of the public sphere where it is possible for an artist to address the issues of our time. She has developed the “City as Living Lab”, a framework for making issues of sustainability tangible through collaboration and the arts, with Marda Kirn of EcoArts Connections. Trained as a sculptor, her work creates situations emphasizing a site’s history, its ecology, or unnoticed aspects of the environment.

ASH ROBINSON: Robinson, an Indianapolis-based public artist and furniture maker, established her artistic voice at the Herron School of Art and Design, where she received her BFA in Furniture Design in 2010 before continuing her studies at San Diego State University. By focusing on political and cultural issues, Robinson’s work flirts with tradition and the avant-garde while striving to expose the tormented mind and the social stereotypes that plague it.