0
View Post
Help us meet our match to beautify our art block!

Help us meet our match to beautify our art block!

Today through Dec. 22, each dollar you give in support is matched by Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority (IHCDA)’s CreatINg Places program.

Please donate today. Your tax-deductible support will help us further beautify our block on the near southside for people to celebrate art, poetry, and each other at our welcoming public place filled with color, light, and nature.  You can also help us by sharing the word about this opportunity that also comes with fun rewards for donating.

With this project on our contemporary art campus (now with 16 artist homes and three cultural and community buildings) we’ll improve the streetscape by bringing the artist’s homes alive with color, light, and plantings. And we’ll add commissioned public art around the block (including poets and musicians as well as visual artists) as we launch a seasonal art walk series that will include the resident artists as it becomes a regular celebration for the public.

Learn more and donate at www.patronicity.com/abloom

What we’ll do with your support (often working with and paying commissioned, neighborhood, and other locally based artists):

  • Paint artist houses on the block with vibrant and welcoming colors.
  • Add light elements to homes and streets for night-time art walks and year-round beauty.
  • Utilize a projector to show bright and colorful digital art on the side of our soon-to-be-renovated big building — visible from much of the block.
  • Bring public art to surprising places on the block — like the chain-link fence around our parking lot (colorful flower mural), street sign poles (a perfect place for poems), and the dead-end barrier at the end of Cruft Street (kinetic sculpture).
  • Add benches around existing trees along Cruft Street and install attractive planters for residents to use for growing food in spring.
  • Install wayfinding and informational signage around the block.
  • Start the first of an ongoing tradition of seasonal art walks around the entire block (winter, spring, summer, and fall) that include galleries, installations, and performances at the different artist’s homes and yards.

We hope you can join us for a donation-optional art openings and fundraiser celebration during First Friday on Dec. 2 from 6-10 p.m. at Tube Factory artspace. 

Proceeds from that night will go toward this campaign. As always, we thank our friends at Sun King for their ongoing support. 

DONATE TO OUR MATCHING CAMPAIGN

If you’d prefer to write a check, please also note Patronicity in the memo. You can mail/drop your donation in person at the following address:


 Big Car Collaborative
1125 Cruft Street
Indianapolis, IN 46203

0
View Post
Circle SPARK Fest Artist & Vendor Call Out

Circle SPARK Fest Artist & Vendor Call Out

Sat & Sun, October 22-23 1-5 PM on Monument Circle

Big Car Collaborative in partnership with Downtown Indy, Inc. are bringing Circle Spark Fest on Monument Circle and are seeking artists to participate.  

400 to 600 guests are expected at the following event, the majority of which are downtown for work, and a good number of downtown residents as well. A required Vendor Submission Form is Due September 29 @ 12pm.

Event Details

Event:  Circle Spark Fest

LocationSW Quad of Monument Circle (in front of Emmis)

Parking Provided (1 vehicle per artist) on Monument Circle on the SE and NW quad curb lane. 

Schedule

Event Time:   1:00 – 6:00 p.m.

Load-in Time:   11 am

Load-out Completion: 9 pm

Artist Requirements:

  • We will require a $50 refundable deposit for artists to participate once accepted. Artisan vendors will be refunded their full deposit upon attendance.
  • Artists must provide their own setup (which could include a 10×10 tent, table, chairs, signage, etc.)
  • A signed Services Agreement that Downtown Indy, Inc. will need returned at least 48 hours prior to event

Big Car Collaborative and Downtown Indy, Inc. will provide:

  • 1- (12×12) space along the curb lane or the inner part of the SW quad of The Circle
  • Access to electrical outlet for $10 fee (limited number available)
  • Overall logistics/event management
  • Police officers to close the SW quad of the Circle
  • Overnight security of vendor booths
  • Port-o-lets and handwashing stations
  • 1 parking space per artist
  • Liability insurance for vendors
  • Marketing and promotion of event (vendors will be required to market their participation of the event, Big Car and Downtown Indy will NOT promote any single vendor)
  • Live music, games, and artist-led activities

Eligibility

Circle Spark Fest is open to all individual artists and artisans over 18 years of age living in central Indiana, but preference will be given to those living in downtown Indianapolis. All artwork must be original art or fine craft and made by the artist/s and/or artisan/s present at the event. We define “fine craft” as functional objects such as unique one of a kind ceramics, jewelry, etc. and also include creative functional non-art objects such as artisan made soaps, clothing, etc.  Imported or commercially made objects will not be accepted.

All 2D and 3D media are welcome. However, due to the nature and timing of the event, it is recommended that all items are offered in an accessible size and priced relative to the environment ranging from the low end of $5 to a median $50 and higher end between $150 and $250.

Selection Process:

Artists/Artisans will be selected based upon the quality and uniqueness of their work as well as its appropriateness for a variety of downtown audiences.

Fill out the Submission Form here.

  • This form will take 5-10 minutes to fill out if you have your upload materials ready.
  • Via the online form, applicants are to submit 5 images depicting examples of the artwork/fine craft they intend to sell at Circle Spark Fest as well as an (optional) photo of their booth set up.
  • You will be notified by October 3 if you’ve been selected to be a featured artist/artisan for the Fest.

Timeline: 

Wednesday, September 29th by noon: Application Deadline

October 3: All artists/artisans are notified whether or not they have been accepted into Circle Spark Fest. Those accepted will receive further instruction on load in that they have been chosen and will be given further instruction on load-in and parking.

By Friday, October 14th: All required documents must be returned.

More information about the organizers of Circle Spark Fest:

With SPARK on the Circle in 2022, the artist-led cultural and community organization, Big Car Collaborative, is teaming up with Downtown Indy and the City of Indianapolis to spark downtown with free, human-scale activities like playing games, enjoying live music, making art, and socializing in a comfortable place to take it easy, spend time together, and enjoy our city. SPARK activities are free for everyone to enjoy.

For specific questions, please contact email hidden; JavaScript is required 

0
View Post
SPARK on the Circle 2022

SPARK on the Circle 2022

Who and what? We at Big Car are teaming up with Downtown Indy and the City of Indianapolis — with support from the Capital Improvement Board and the Indiana War Memorials Commission— to spark Monument Circle with human-scale activities like games, live music, artmaking, and socializing in a comfortable place. Everything is free for people to enjoy. 

When? We started this round of SPARK in the last week of June. We’ll be going through the end of October — Mondays through Thursdays 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Fridays 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. 

In September: we add 5-9 pm Wednesdays and Circle SPARK Festival on Oct. 22-23 (Saturday and Sunday). Our last day will be Oct. 28.

Event info and more at circlespark.org and sparkplaces on Instagram. 

Where? We’re based from the southwest quadrant in front of the Emmis.

Why? SPARK’s goals are to: 

  1. Honor the history and civic importance of Monument Circle while working to bring vitality to the space today and support a bright future for the Circle.
  2. Help improve the quality of life of those who enjoy the Circle by supporting a thriving, welcoming, inclusive, comfortable, and fun civic and social space in the center of our city.
  3. 3. Provide enjoyable, memorable, creative, and surprising experiences for visitors.
  4. Support and pay Indianapolis artists working in many genres.
  5. Spark economic opportunities for local business owners and entrepreneurs — including artists. SPARK focuses on supporting Downtown businesses on or near Monument Circle.


Of note: In 2015, we at Big Car Collaborative teamed up with the City, Downtown Indy, and many others to test — over a stretch of one summer — to test the big idea of prioritizing Monument Circle for people. Funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts along with support from CICF and the City, this project (also called Spark) proved very successful.

You can find the 2022 schedule and more information at circlespark.org. 

Details 

DAILY OFFERINGS

Circle Sounds — During all open SPARK hours, Big Car artists are programming Circle Sounds through the Circle’s amazing audio speakers. Circle Sounds also airs citywide on our community radio station, WQRT 99.1 FM and streaming at wqrt.org. It’s a mix of upbeat instrumentals — from jazz to world music to pop — that also includes work by local musicians. In between batches of songs, we share, instead of commercials, audio projects being created there. This includes commissioned poems in response to the Circle, haikus submitted by the public visiting the Circle, quick thoughts by visitors on why they love the Circle, and more. WQRT is also doing live DJing at the Circle and taking requests Fridays from noon to 1 p.m.

All weekdays — A range of pop-up offerings and opportunities to play games, make art, record poems, send free postcards, hang out in a shady spot, and get info from staff artists on site. 

Tuesdays — Each week at noon, we offer Lunch Break Live presented by Lake City Bank featuring local (mostly pop and singer/songwriter) musicians curated by Indianapolis musician The Girl Called Books. (See full musician list below).

Wednesday evenings — Guided walks about history and culture offered the evenings each week. Wednesdays also feature Evening Embers: Ambient Music at Spark Monument Circle — organized by Indianapolis ambient artist Rob Funkhouser. (See full list of walks and Wednesday evening series musicians below).

Thursdays — From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., free, quick-stop artist interactions and hands-on activities ranging from block printing or live painting, to portrait drawing or henna hand art.

Fridays — Open until 9 pm for people enjoying the Circle and getting started on the weekend.

SPECIAL PROJECTS

Circle Artist in Residence — Yeabsera Tabb is working on ideas related to play and exploring the Circle. One project includes playful prompts printed and located on the sidewalks. (See more information from Yeabsera below). 

Circle Anthology — We’re commissioning 25 writers to share work inspired by the Circle. Their poems will air on WQRT FM during Circle Sounds playing from the Circle speakers and we’ll do a live reading with this group at 7 p.m. on Oct. 12. This is linked to our Haiku Here that encourages people to submit their own haikus inspired by the Circle to air on WQRT and play on the Circle speakers during Circle Sounds each day. 

No More No Place — Organized by Indianapolis musician and IUPUI professor Jordan Munson, this project pairs instrumental music by local composers with video accompaniments projected on the Circle. Debuts at 8 p.m. on Oct. 12. 

Circle SPARK Fest — Oct. 22-23 from 1-6 p.m. each day. We’ll showcase local artists and musicians with a brand-new, two-day celebration of art and harvest time. Artisan vendors, live music, performance art, pumpkin decorating, and lots more. On Saturday, bands playing are Radar Gold, Books & Straight As, Vertice, and The Brothers Footman. On Sunday; it’s Addie Kosten; Beatty and the Bayonets; Kristen Bales; Ricardo. Artist Derek Tuder will bring his mobile art gallery and selfie studio and Big Car’s Wagon of Wonders will be there.

Halloween on the Circle — Oct. 26 a Halloween-themed walk at 6 pm. and a live soundtrack to the silent scary film, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1920), at 7:30 p.m. on the Monument steps. Film and soundtrack by local musicians in partnership with Classical Music Indy. 

Boot Scoot and Vintage Market on the Circle — Oct. 27 at 6  p.m. Hosted by artist John Stamps, this will be an evening of line dancing and country music on the Circle. Costume contest that night too. Massive line dance and costume contest led by John Stamps/Kevin Hofmeister.

What if people have ideas or want to partner on an idea? 

They can reach out to us at email hidden; JavaScript is required.

More details 

Lunchbreak Live musicians (Tuesdays at noon, free)

Sept 6: Emma Peridot (synth pop)

Sept 13: Sheeza (rock & soul) 

Sept 20: Florelis Jimenez Vejas (Venezuelan pop)

Sept 27: Bitter Proof (experimental classical, jazz)

Oct 4: The Hammer and The Hatchet (Americana)

Oct. 11: Katie Jo Robinson (Indie jazz-pop)

Oct. 18: Indy Annies (country)

Oct. 25: Crescent Ulmer (folk, singer-songwriter) 

Walking tours (Wednesdays at 6 p.m., free)

Sept. 7— Indy’s German Heritage: Explore Indianapolis German American History with architectural historian Bill Selm. You don’t need to be German to take the tour…just interested in knowing more about this particular history of Indianapolis. Cosponsored by IUPUI Interior Design Technology and the Indiana German Heritage Society.

Sept. 14 — The Circle City’s Namesake Landmark: Gain deeper appreciation for Indianapolis’s symbolic heart by exploring the history and architecture of the Soldiers & Sailors Monument and the buildings that encircle it. Tours presented by Indiana Landmarks.

Sept. 21 — Haiku Hike: Learn about the art of haiku observation and try your hand at some in-the-moment, 3-line poems led by poet, Big Car executive director and SPARK lead artist Jim Walker. Co-create a linked group haiku (renga) with your fellow walkers. And we’ll record haiku to air on WQRT FM. Everyone gets a free little notebook. Presented by Big Car. 

Sept. 28 — Ugly Ducklings: Join historians Jordan Ryan and Callie McCune for a look at the hidden tales and amazing stories behind buildings you might love to hate: City-County Building, the Gold Building, the former Anthem building on Monument Circle, and others. You may even learn to love some of Indy’s most unseemly architecture.

Oct. 5 — Magical History Tour: Artist, scavenger, and raconteur Kipp Normand guides you on a stroll through the oddities of Indianapolis history and spaces. Get ready for weird.

Oct. 12 — The Circle City’s Namesake Landmark: Gain deeper appreciation for Indianapolis’s symbolic heart by exploring the history and architecture of the Soldiers & Sailors Monument and the buildings that encircle it. Tours presented by Indiana Landmarks  (repeat of Sept. 14 tour).

Oct. 19 — Public Art Crawl: Inspired by the recent Public Art Census produced by Rokh – a cultural equity research & design studio – take an artist-led tour highlighting Downtown’s public works by artists of the global majority (Black, Asian, Brown, dual-heritage, Indigenous). Presented by Rokh.

Oct. 26 — Spooky Mayhem Tour: Brace yourself for a Halloween-ish tour of the seedy, sinister, dark side of Indianapolis history.

Note: All tours meet at the SPARK welcome trailer on the southwest quad of Monument Circle. Expect to walk between a half-mile and 2 miles total. In case of bad weather, cancellation decisions will be made by 3 p.m. Check SPARK social media or website for updates.

Evening Embers: Ambient Music (Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m., free)

Sept. 7:  Airport People 

Sept 14: Clare Longendyke

Sept. 21: Landon Caldwell

Sept. 28: Michael Raintree 

Oct. 5:  DJ Little Town 

Oct. 12: Jordan Munson and Rob Funkhouser

Oct. 19: Hanna Benn 

More about the 2022 Circle Artist in Residence

Hello! My name is Yeabsera Tabb. I’m a Social Impact Designer and an artist based in Indianapolis. I’m interested in how physical places shape our daily experiences and our identity. I love the serendipitous interaction and connections that occur in public places between people of all backgrounds. 

The physical and conceptual aspect of places and identity has been a huge part of my art and design exploration. I was born in Addis Ababa Ethiopia and lived there until the age of 13. Buildings and public places looked and functioned differently there than they do here. And spaces possessed similar yet different identities and memories. I was drawn to exploring the built environment in terms of form and structure and socially constructed ideas of belonging and identity. I’m thrilled at the opportunity to foster human connection through place, art, and play at the Monument Circle Artist Residency.  

My work often addresses my lived experience inhabiting multiple identities both as a Black woman in America and as an immigrant. Through printmaking, textiles, and other forms of visual art I explore the nuance concept of home and place. During my time as a Design for Social Impact student, I conducted a year-long research project on the experiences of Black women in America, particularly, Black women navigating predominantly white spaces. I transformed this collection of qualitative data into my show Black Presence to create safe spaces of healing and joy for Black women. Black Presence was on display at 1920 Gallery in Marion, Indiana, and 1000 Words Indy in Indianapolis. After graduating with degrees in both Design for Social Impact and Fine Arts, I held multiple solo shows in Indianapolis as well as group shows including The Truth of Freedom at Newfields. Additionally, I was one of 10 Black woman artists named as an Emerging Visionary Artist by Shea Moisture. 

All the connections I made through these explorations empower me to continue to create work that is human-centered at its core. I’m excited to be Big Car’s Monument Circle artist and resident this summer/fall. I am looking forward to creating opportunities for connection at Monument Circles through artful play. Monument Circle is a major point of connection in the city of Indianapolis. The space functions as a threshold that connects people of all backgrounds such as business professionals, residents, tourists and so much more. It’s a transient space that acts as a study point of intersection.  I hope to honor the place by knowing it well through being present and recognizing the assets as well as the needs. I’m looking forward to growing as a person and an artist through connecting with people and collaborating with the team. 

0
View Post
Congratulations to the 2022 Power Plant Grant recipients

Congratulations to the 2022 Power Plant Grant recipients

Big Car Collaborative, has regranted a total of $60,000 to five artist collectives and five individual artists living and working in the Indianapolis area. These Power Plant Grants — made possible by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts based in New York — fund visual artists and collectives producing public-facing work that’s experimental and brings new energy to the city’s arts community. 

Big Car is one of 32 regional regranting organizations across the United States working to support artists via funds from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Art. This is the third round of Power Plant Grants in Indianapolis. The program started in 2020 as emergency grants distributed during the height of the pandemic. In 2021, Big Car also awarded $60,000 in project grants to artists and artist-run spaces. 

“Power Plant Grants energize the Indianapolis arts community and support visual artists by encouraging them to grow by taking chances, realizing untapped potential, trying experimental projects, collaborating with each other, and bringing work to unusual places,” said Big Car program director Shauta Marsh. “We’re excited by the quality, dedication, and innovation we see in the work of these artists in our city. We’re so glad to be able to support them and what they’re bringing to audiences in Indianapolis.” 

Power Plant grants support visual artists who live, work, or run spaces in Indianapolis with project grants ranging from $2,000 to $10,000. 

These are the funded projects for 2022:

Chromatic Collective

Chromatic Collective is an artist-run space in Broad Ripple that provides niche art supply and space for both emerging and established artists of all mediums to exhibit their work. We create connections between artists and act as a creative resource for the public to interact with the arts.

From Left to Right: Hailee Smith, Erica Parker, Rafael Caro, Nate Holmes, Mike Kane.

IG: www.instagram.com/chromatic6216 

FB: https://www.facebook.com/Chromatic6216/ 

Philip Campbell: From Me to You

From Me to You  is a series of six handmade, art quilts (or security blankets) that will be exhibited in the Horizon House and then presented to patients at the Pedigo Clinic who are experiencing homelessness and in recovery from a substance use disorder.  Each security blanket will be a unique combination of new fabrics combined with recycled textiles. “I deconstruct used clothing to make most of my work. Using this as a metaphor

for healing ourselves: Sometimes in the process of repairing things that have broken, we actually create something more unique, beautiful and resilient.”

IG: www.instagram.com/philipcampbell

1000 Words Gallery

1000 Words Gallery has created a safe space for artists to grow and flourish through our monthly residency program. The space has hosted over 10 black, emerging artists since the beginning of 2021. Its programs include artist development, art classes, art events, and community engagement. Also, 1000 Words plans to expand their residency with more funding and make it open to more artists.

From Left to Right: Arria Woolcock, Ikennea Stovall, Greg Rose, Chris Smith

IG: https://www.instagram.com/1000wordsindy/
Website: https://1000wordsindy.com

Silvia Vimos Suarez: Stitches of Presence

 Stitches of Presence is a space for gathering, recognition, and offering through hand embroidery. Suarez will convene Latina women living in the East Side Indianapolis to get together. During the gathering time, the women will recognize the value of knowledge and wisdom and share this knowledge among themselves and with our community.

The gatherings will take place at the Irvington Public Library. The library is a symbolic place par excellence where the knowledge generated by humanity converges and circulates. For this reason, the intention of this project is to build presence in this public place through diverse symbolic gestures, contributing to the convergence of knowledge.

Blog: https://silviavimos.blogspot.com/
IG: https://www.instagram.com/willkaypacha/

Boxx the Artist: The Women In Between

The Women In Between will be a new body of work that explores printing dark skin tone hues on canvas and amplifying detail with acrylics. This project will be featured in an exhibit upon completion for in-person exhibits, virtual exhibition, and developed as an NFT project for the digital blockchain. Historically, the chemicals used during this process were not adequate to capture a diversity of darker

skin tones. Racial bias was systematically embedded through the color calibration process for printing with the use of “Shirley Cards” developed by Kodak as reference photos for technicians to balance hues that became an industry standard. This lacked range for dark skin, resulting in poorly printed photos. Despite advancements in technology, printing dark skinned hues still lacks details. Boxx the Artists’ collection will focus on the diversity of dark skin tones through canvas printing capturing the details through print and explore this systematic bias within printmaking using acrylics as a solution.

Website: www.boxxtheartist.com 

IG: www.instagram.com/boxxtheartist  

Fb: www.facebook.com/boxxtheartist 

Twitter: www.twitter.com/boxxtheartist www.linkedIn.com/in/boxxtheartist

BRIDGE Collective City Natives Gallery

Mike Graves

City Natives Gallery is curated by BRIDGE Collective. Located on the second floor of the Murphy Arts Center in Fountain Square, the gallery and shop features contemporary fine art, apparel, and more. BRIDGE works with both emerging and established artists, providing professional gallery space, and imparting our expertise in artist services,

formed over the last 20 years working as artists, curators, and arts administrators. This Power Plant grant will support an exhibit with Artist Carolyn Harper, Philadelphia-based textile artist to create a new piece about Indianapolis resident Kristine Bunch who was she was wrongfully convicted of arson and the murder of her young son and spent 17 years of her life in prison and released in 2012.

IG: https://www.instagram.com/bridgecollective/

Kaila Austin: Reimagining the Hardrick Home: Public Art as Heritage Preservation

“Reimagining the Hardrick Home: Public Art as Heritage Preservation” engages the little-known history of Indiana’s first African American painter, John Wesley Hardrick, born 1891 in Norwood on the Southeast side of Indianapolis. “Working with the recently identified Hardrick Family collection and in collaboration with his descendants, my end goal is to replicate a Lost Mural that was painted at Crispus Attucks High

School in the 1930s to be installed in the Pride Park in Norwood at its re-opening celebration. “This grant will allow Austin to use the Hardrick Family Collection to do studies of his work, read his diaries, learn about his techniques, and research other artists working during the Harlem Renaissance. All of this to replicate a mural that was never seen and to which there are no known photos of.

Photo credit: Ankh Productions Inc.
IG: https://www.instagram.com/kailataustin/
IG: https://www.instagram.com/theroguehistorian/

Healer DIY: Natural Infestation

Natural Infestation is a continuation of installations in the outdoor space of Healer DIY, focusing on the transformation of two RVs and a van shrine. The green RV will house an immersive installation focused on natural infestations similar to Healer’s interior, featuring vines, floral elements, interactive lighting, and animatronic sculptures.

The silver RV will feature a steampunk/post-apocalypse-themed installation in the vein of the Mad Max vehicles, featuring interactive elements such as wheels, periscopes, and large gears. Scrap metal and ornate elements will decorate the RV, as well as a quintessential steampunk interior aesthetic with several animatronic elements including a lifesize animatronic steampunk pilot.

IG: https://www.instagram.com/echoingpulse/
TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@echoingpulse
FB: https://www.facebook.com/healerindianapolis

Lukas Schooler, Ventiko, and Lauren Curry

Ontogenesis is a new, multimedia, durational performance by Lauren Curry, Lukas Schooler, and Ventiko. Ontogenesis illustrates complicated emotions of a ritualistic homecoming where old connections are mourned and new connections are celebrated.

Left to Right: Ventigo, Lauren Curry, Lukas Schooler

The pilgrimage fosters interconnectedness through journeys of transformation by traveling the Canal Walk and engages the public.

Lukas Schooler:

IG: www.instagram.com/lukas.felix.schooler
FB: https://www.facebook.com/lfschooler
Website: www.lukasschooler.com

Ventigo:

IG: www.instagram.com/ventiko
Website: www.ventiko.com


Indy Movement Arts (Lauren Curry)

IG: www.instagram.com/indymovementarts
Website: www.indymovementarts.org

Landon Caldwell: Hidden World

Hidden World is a spatial and interactive sound art collaborative exhibition series & residency focused on sound and its relation to ecology, community, and accessibility. This project builds on the work of Caldwell’s previous project “Everything I hear will outlive me,” a spatial

composition presented at Hidden World along with another work, an interactive sound sculpture titled ‘Touch me so I know I’m still here’ at Gethsemane Green Space on the Eastside of Indianapolis.

IG: https://www.instagram.com/landonscaldwell/

Website: http://www.landoncaldwell.com 


About the Program: Power Plant Grants energize the Indianapolis arts community and support visual artists by encouraging them to grow by taking chances, realizing untapped potential, trying experimental projects, collaborating with each other, and bringing work to unusual places. The grants support — on an annual basis — visual artists who live, work, or run spaces in Indianapolis with project grants ranging from $2,000 to $10,000.
Power Plant Grants are made possible by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and are facilitated by Big Car Collaborative.

About the Regional Regranting Program: The Regional Regranting Program was established in 2007 to recognize and support the movement of independently organized, public-facing, artist-centered activity that animates local and regional art scenes but that lies beyond the reach of traditional funding sources. The program is administered by non-profit visual art centers across the United States that work in partnership with the Foundation to fund artists’ experimental projects and collaborative undertakings.

The 32 regranting programs provide grants of up to $10,000 for the creation and presentation of new work. Programs are developed and facilitated by organizations in Mobile (AL), Albuquerque (NM), Atlanta (GA), Baltimore (MD), Boston (MA), Chicago (IL), Cleveland (OH), Denver (CO), Detroit (MI), Houston (TX), Indianapolis (IN), Kansas City (MO), Los Angeles (CA), Miami (FL), Milwaukee (WI), Minneapolis (MN), Knoxville (TN), New Orleans (LA), Newark (NJ), Oklahoma (OK), Omaha (NE), Philadelphia (PA), Phoenix & Tucson (AZ), Portland (OR), Portland (ME), Providence (RI), Raleigh & Greensboro (NC), Saint Louis (MO), San Francisco (CA), San Juan, PR, Seattle (WA), and Washington D.C.

0
View Post
Meet Yeabsera Tabb-Artist in Residence for SPARK on the Circle

Meet Yeabsera Tabb-Artist in Residence for SPARK on the Circle

Hello! My name is Yeabsera Tabb. I’m a Social Impact Designer and an artist based in Indianapolis. I’m interested in how physical places shape our daily experiences and our identity. I love the serendipitous interaction and connections that occur in public places between people of all backgrounds. 

The physical and conceptual aspect of places and identity has been a huge part of my art and design exploration. I was born in Addis Ababa Ethiopia and lived there until the age of 13. Buildings and public places looked and functioned differently there than they do here. And spaces possessed similar yet different identities and memories. I was drawn to exploring the built environment in terms of form and structure and socially constructed ideas of belonging and identity. I’m thrilled at the opportunity to foster human connection through place, art, and play at the Monument Circle Artist Residency.  

My work often addresses my lived experience inhabiting multiple identities both as a Black woman in America and as an immigrant. Through printmaking, textiles, and other forms of visual art I explore the nuance concept of home and place. During my time as a Design for Social Impact student, I conducted a year-long research project on the experiences of Black women in America, particularly, Black women navigating predominantly white spaces. I transformed this collection of qualitative data into my show Black Presence to create safe spaces of healing and joy for Black women. Black Presence was on display at 1920 Gallery in Marion, Indiana, and 1000 Words Indy in Indianapolis. After graduating with degrees in both Design for Social Impact and Fine Arts, I held multiple solo shows in Indianapolis as well as group shows including The Truth of Freedom Newfields. Additionally, I was one of 10 Black woman artists named as an Emerging Visionary Artist by Shea Moisture. 

All the connections I made through these explorations empower me to continue to create work that is human-centered at its core. I am excited to be Big Car’s Monument Circle artist and resident this summer and fall. I’m looking forward to creating opportunities for connection at Monument Circles through artful play. Monument Circle is a major point of connection in the city of Indianapolis. The space functions as a threshold that connects people of all backgrounds such as business professionals, residents, tourists, and so much more. It’s a transient space that acts as a study point of intersection. I hope to honor the place by knowing it well through being present and recognizing the assets as well as the needs. I am looking forward to growing as a person and an artist through connecting with people and collaborating with the team.

About SPARK on the Circle: This is an inclusive, artist-led, site-specific partnership between Big Car and Downtown Indy for free daily programming, arts activities, games, live entertainment, and recreation. Also working with the City of Indianapolis, SPARK is made possible by the Capital Improvement Board and Lake City Bank. Learn more at circlespark.org

0

Lockerbie Pop-Up Public Place

Lockerbie Night Market from Big Car Collaborative on Vimeo.

In October 2017, our Indianapolis Spark Placemaking crew teamed up with CitiMark and Gershman Partners to bring short-term public programming to the Lockerbie Marketplace small park area between Alabama, New York, New Jersey, and Vermont streets in the heart of Downtown. This previously underutilized green space is surrounded by a grocery store and other office and retail spaces and is located just off of the Indianapolis Cultural Trail. Due to successful events and programming, we were invited back – Look out for the following events in 2022!

Lunch at Lockerbie Marketplace
Spend your lunchtime with us at Lockerbie Marketplace every Thursday. Stop by to enjoy the various activities that this hidden downtown green space has to offer along with a soundtrack provided by live musicians from right here in your city. Challenge a friend to a game of table tennis, play giant Jenga, and find your new favorite musician. At Lockerbie Marketplace green space, food truck from 11 am-1 pm and live music 12-1 pm.

Make sure to pop in each week for varied activities like pilates, psychic readings, and creative activities with local artists, Rhythm Discovery Center, The Hot Room, and the Kurt Vonnegut Museum & Library.

Lockerbie Place Schedule || Every Thursday, June 2 – Oct. 27, 2022

Live Music Schedule

August 4 Kristen Bales // alt-rock

August 18 Kristina Sharpe // pianist and singer-songwriter

September 1 Rob Funkhouser // instrumental 

September 15 Adam Graahs // indie-pop

September 29 FIFTH LUCKY DRAGON // alt-pop

Bi-weekly food trucks include Wildboar BBQ, Chef Tater’s Potato, Taste of Manila, and That Vegan Joint.

After Work Happy Hours (4-6 PM)

June 16 LIVE MUSIC with The Girl Called Books (Soul) || Jovan Art || Celestial 

Arts & Antiques || Justin Cooper || Taste of Manilla

July 21 WQRT DJ MIX || Storytelling Project || Jovan Art || Lone Wolf Vintage || 

Justin Cooper || Wildboar BBQ

August 18 WQRT DJ MIX || Jovan Art ||Stephanie Williams? || Justin Cooper || 

Wildboar BBQ

September 22 LIVE MUSIC with Fern Murphy (shoegaze/dream-pop) || Jovan Art || 

Vintage Kat || Taste of Manilla

October 13 Bashiri Asad (soul, jazz) || Jason Gray || Jovan Art || Taste of 

Manilla

All events are free at 320 N New Jersey Street in the greenspace right off the Cultural Trail

Keep this page bookmarked for more event announcements and details.

0
View Post
Social Alchemy Symposium

Social Alchemy Symposium

The Social Alchemy Symposium was a participatory mini-conference that took place in New Harmony, Indiana April 10-13, 2022.

You can listen to audio from the symposium here:

More about the symposium: Twice the site of utopian experiments in communitarian living, New Harmony is a town rich in beauty, culture, and history. And it made the perfect location for more than 150 people to gather for the symposium in person and enjoy conversations led by more than 20 notable authors, artists, designers, and philosophers from Indiana and around the world as we explored the role of utopian thinking.

With more than 1,300 viewers (both in-person and virtual), the symposium connects the history of utopias in this small town with our ongoing efforts at Big Car Collaborative to build an inclusive and affordable arts-based intentional community at our Cruft Street campus. 

The symposium — organized through a partnership between Big Car Collaborative, the University of Southern Indiana, Historic New Harmony, and the New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art — was made possible by Indiana Humanities, the Efroymson Family Fund, and New America. Additional partners included the Indiana State Museum and PATTERN Magazine.

Check out pictures from the symposium

Here’s a reading list from the symposium and about utopian thinking.

Check out the full program schedule here


Some related PATTERN Magazine publications


Some highlighted sessions & recordings

Dreaming of New Worlds: World Building for Community Work with Maurice Broaddus [author]. Listen here.

Utopian Literature & Writing in New Harmony moderated by Jim Walker with Susan Neville [fiction writer/essayist], Matthew Graham [Indiana Poet Laureate], & Kevin McKelvey [poet & UIndy professor]. Listen here.  By the way, this is the poem Matthew talks about where, yes, Big Car gets its name.

Utopic Cultural Projects Conversation – Visual Art, Music & Movement moderated by Shauta Marsh with Keesha Dixon [Asante Arts Institute of Indianapolis], Docey Lewis [designer], Lauren Curry [Indy Movement Arts Collective] & Oreo Jones [musician & Big Car artists & WQRT FM manager]. Listen here.

Inclusion & access with the Indianapolis Cultural Trail & Neighborhood Development with DeAmon Harges [neighborhood organizer] & Brian Payne [CEO, Central Indiana Community Foundation & driving force behind the Cultural Trail]. Listen here.

Utopian Architecture with Marsh Davis [president, Indiana Landmarks], Lourenzo Giple [deputy director of planning, preservation, & design, City of Indianapolis], Adam Thies [associate VP for capital planning at Indiana University]. Moderated by Anne Laker [writer & Social Alchemy symposium team member]. Listen here.

New Harmony Meets Columbus, Indiana with Richard McCoy [Landmark Columbus Foundation], Kathryn Armstrong [Columbus Area Arts Council], & Kent Schuette [professor of landscape architecture & planning at Purdue]. Moderated by Chris Merritt. Listen here.

Here’s a great way to listen to the story of the origin of New Harmony:


A quick history of New Harmony Pop. 719 (as of 2019)

MISSISSIPPIAN INDIGENOUS PEOPLE: Native Americans maintained complex, productive communities in the area, including earthen mounds built for ceremonial and cosmological purposes.

THE HARMONISTS: German farmer George Rapp and 400 followers arrived in 1815, building New Harmony as a community based on productivity, worker-owned industries, and shared resources.

THE OWENITES: The Rappites sold the land in 1825 to Robert Owen, a Welsh socialist. At its height, 1,000 Owenites were part of a “Village of Unity and Mutual Cooperation” prioritizing worker rights, scientific research, and artistic expression.

JANE BLAFFER OWEN: For nearly seven decades, Jane Blaffer Owen was the driving force behind the restoration and revitalization of the town of New Harmony, Indiana. Owen had a vision for the town, bringing in and commissioning renowned architects, visual artists, musicians, and writers. Her time there is often referred to as the town’s “third utopia.”


Why we at Big Car did this: As a nonprofit organization working in art-based community development, we’re very interested in intentional and inclusive communities designed for all to thrive. That’s our goal for our 19-building, 16-home, one-block Cruft Street Commons project in Garfield Park –– to make an arts-focused, socially cohesive mini neighborhood. And this work is inspired by our research into historic utopias in New Harmony and elsewhere. 

Why is this called Social AlchemyIn our research about New Harmony, we discovered that Father George Rapp — founder of the Harmonists, the first utopian experiment in New Harmony — studied alchemy and was trying to make gold and other precious commodities to fund his vision of utopia. Today, with New Harmony already a successful town with much to offer (including events and public programs), this project and symposium combines all the assets of New Harmony: the people who live there, the architecture, art, and food to celebrate and expand the town’s magic to Indianapolis and hopefully even further. We’re calling this mixture of everything Social AlchemyIf you haven’t already, this audio story we made as part of our overall Social Alchemy project is an entertaining primer on how New Harmony began.

Learn more about the overall Social Alchemy project.

0
View Post
Social Alchemy Symposium Program (April 10-13, 2022)

Social Alchemy Symposium Program (April 10-13, 2022)

The Social Alchemy Symposium is a participatory gathering April 10-13 in New Harmony, a town twice the site of utopian experiments. Conversations — led by more than 20 authors, artists, designers, and philosophers from around the world — will look at the role of utopian thinking: yesterday, today, and tomorrow. Attendees are welcome to join any parts of the free symposium in person, online, or both. Organized by Big Car Collaborative and the University of Southern Indiana. And made possible by Indiana Humanities, the Efroymson Family Fund, and New America.

You can still register and are welcome to arrive in person. More info here.

If you haven’t already, this audio story we made as part of our overall Social Alchemy project is an entertaining primer on how New Harmony began.

Note: New Harmony is in the Central Time Zone.

Symposium locations in New Harmony
New Harmony Inn & Conference Center Great Room, 504 North St.
New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art, 506 Main St.
Atheneum, 401 Arthur St.
Thrall’s Opera House, 612 Church St.
Rapp Owen Granary, 413 Granary St.

Sunday, April 10

Sunday, April 10 @7:30 PM ET/6:30 PM CT || New Harmony Inn Great Room (at registration area) Emily St. John Mandel [author of Station Eleven] in conversation via zoom with an in-person viewing party. Join virtually here.

Emily St. John Mandel is a Canadian novelist and essayist. She’s written numerous essays and five novels, including Station Eleven (2014) and The Glass Hotel (2020). Station Eleven, translated into 33 languages, has been adapted into a series on HBO Max. The Glass Hotel was selected by Barack Obama as one of his favorite books from 2020.


Monday, April 11

Monday, April 11 @ 1 PM ET/12-1 PM CT|| New Harmony Inn Great Room (at registration area) Cara Courage [placemaking/contemporary art expert & author] in conversation with Jim Walker [Big Car Collaborative co-founder] via zoom and in-person viewing party. Join virtually here.

Dr. Cara Courage is the executive director at the Museum of Contemporary Art Detriot. Courage has published widely on these art, activism, and placemaking and is editor of The Routledge Handbook of Placemaking (Routledge, 2020), co-editor of Creative Placemaking and Beyond (Routledge, 2018), and author of Arts in Place: The Arts, the Urban and Social Practice (Routledge, 2017).


Monday, April 11 @6:30 PM ET/5:30-7:30 PM CT|| New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art. Reception: Visualizing Spaces exhibition. At 5:30, Visualizing Spaces exhibition conversation with Nasreen Khan & Janie Stamm [artists]. Moderated by Iris Williamson [director & curator of New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art]. Join virtually here.

Nasreen Khan is an Indianapolis-based artist primarily working in wood. Her art is grounded in her cultural experience as an immigrant mother and she draws the most inspiration from the clash of the natural world and the urban landscape that she inhabits.

Janie Stamm is a craft-based artist currently residing on the western banks of the Mississippi River in Saint Louis, Missouri. Her work focuses on preserving Florida’s environmental and Queer history in the face of climate change.

Iris Williamson is a curator, arts administrator, and educator. She currently directs and curates the New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art at the University of Southern Indiana. At the same time, she directs the gallery HOLDING Contemporary in Portland and is a 2021-22 Curator-in-Residence at the University of Oregon’s Center for Artistic Research. She’s worked on several curatorial projects nationally.


Tuesday, April 12

Tuesday, April 12 @10 AM ET/9-9:30 AM CT|| Atheneum Welcome remarks & New Harmony Intro video. Join virtually here.

Tuesday, April 12 @10:30 AM ET/9:30-10:15 AM CT || Atheneum Utopic Public Places & Inclusive Communities, Small Towns, & Cities Learning from Each Other with Lora Arneberg [New Harmony community leader], Chris Merritt [landscape architect with Merritt Chase], moderated by Shauta Marsh [director of Big Car’s affordable housing program]. Join virtually here.

Lora Arneberg moved to New Harmony, IN with her family at the age of 10. She’s been a leader on the Harmony Way Bridge Restoration Project, and participated in town government and several non-profit boards and organizations. She currently splits her time between community projects, real estate work, and raising her family in New Harmony.

Chris Merritt is a landscape architect & founding Principal of Merritt Chase. His work focuses on the design of culturally significant public spaces in social, ecological, and infrastructural contexts. He’s received recognition for his work with awards from the Urban Land Institute, the American Society of Landscape Architects, the American Institute of Architects, and more.


Tuesday, April 12 @ 11:30 AM ET/10:30-11:20 AM CT || Atheneum Dystopian Utopia in Practice with David Rubin [landscape architect of Land Collective]. Join virtually here.

David Rubin is the founding principal of DAVID RUBIN Land Collective. Rubin is also a recipient of the 2011-12 Garden Club of America Rome Prize in Landscape Architecture from the American Academy in Rome and is a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects. His visionary contribution to the field of “empathy-driven design” is a hallmark of the studio, earning increasing renown for fusing issues of social justice in cities with excellence in the design of public spaces.


Tuesday, April 12 @ 12:30 PM ET/11:30 AM-12 PM CT || Atheneum Co-operative Ownership for Healthy Communities with Jacob Bower-Bir [political scientist-policy specialist] & Nathan Bower-Bir [sustainable housing specialist]. Join virtually here.

Jacob Bower-Bir is an Affiliated Faculty at the Ostrom Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis at Indiana University. He is a frequent consultant and field researcher for international development and governance agencies. He is the Founding Designer at Terran Robotics, a startup that uses artificial intelligence and flying robots to build houses out of mud. He is the Founder of Design Anarchy, an architectural worker co-operative focused on building affordable homes and community spaces. Despite his best efforts, he is – like pretty much everyone today – a shill for the Market System. He’s working on it.

Nathan Bower-Bir was born and raised in Indianapolis. A housing co-operative Nathan co-found proved the place of much of his education, a site of great learning and unlearning. His experiences have led him to believe that people know what they need and what they aspire to in their own lives. People work better and do better when they work together towards shared goals. Professionally, he works to help people attain power and coordinate their work through co-operative organizational structures. In the long game, he hopes that more co-operative lives will build a society oriented around care and responsibility for all the worlds we share. In the meantime, Nathan will always support the strike.


Tuesday, April 12 @12:10-1 PM CT || Opera House LUNCH & Listening party


Tuesday, April 12 @ 2:15 ET/1:15-2 PM CT || Atheneum New Harmony in Historical Context – 19th century American Utopian Communities with Claire Eagle [Historic New Harmony], Tom Guiler [Oneida Community Mansion House], Jon M. Childers [Executive Director of Amana Heritage Society]. Join virtually here.

Thomas A. Guiler is Director of Museum Affairs at the Oneida Community Mansion House. A scholar of intentional and utopian communities, Guiler has published and presented on a wide variety of intentional communities including Byrdcliffe, Roycroft, and Rose Valley in addition to extensive work on the Oneida Community. He is currently working on a book, The Handcrafted Utopia: Arts and Crafts Communities in America’s Progressive Era.

Jon M. Childers joined the Amana Heritage Society (AHS) in 2016. He is dedicated to the vision of telling Amana’s story in new ways that will lead to the sustainability of AHS’s collections and historic properties.  This effort has led to several capital campaigns and a vision for Amana’s future that include a number of new, and improved, heritage sites to engage visitors in Amana’s 300-year heritage. 

Claire Eagle is the Interim Assistant Director of Historic New Harmony. As part of the Historic New Harmony team, she has led a number of programs including the celebration of the 250th anniversary of Robert Owen’s birth and Water/Ways, a Smithsonian Museum on Main Street exhibit. She earned her Bachelor of Science in history from the University of North Alabama and her Master of Arts in history with a historical administration emphasis from Eastern Illinois University.


Tuesday, April 12 @3:15 ET/2:15-3 PM CT || Atheneum Contemporary Utopias & Planned Communities with Silvia Rode [USI Center for Communal Studies] & Jennifer Greene [USI University Archivist]. Moderated by Leslie Townsend [Director of Community Engagement and Historic New Harmony at the University of Southern Indiana]. Join virtually here.

Jennifer Greene is the Associate Professor of Library Science and University Archivist at the David L. Rice Library, University of Southern Indiana. She serves on the Center for Communal Studies Advisory Board and manages the communal studies collections.

Silvia Rode received her Ph.D. in Germanic Studies from the University of California, Los Angelos. She serves as Assistant Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Director of the Center for Communal Studies at the University of Southern Indiana. Her research focuses on the Harmonists, communal history, and utopian theory.

Leslie Townsend is the Director of Community Engagement and Historic New Harmony at the University of Southern Indiana. She brings 25+ years of experience working with heritage-based outreach programs focusing on the areas of cultural/heritage tourism, historic preservation, history education, and community engagement.


Tuesday, April 12 @3:15-3:45 PM CT || Atheneum Activity: Who Are You & What Do You Want? Brief introductions by attendees: whatever you’d like to share about your work or interests.


Tuesday, April 12 @5PM ET/4-5 PM CT || Atheneum New Harmony Meets Columbus, Indiana with Richard McCoy [Landmark Columbus Foundation], Kathryn Armstrong [Columbus Area Arts Council], & Kent Schuette [professor of landscape architecture & planning at Purdue]. Moderated by Chris Merritt. Join virtually here.

Richard McCoy is the founding Executive Director of Landmark Columbus Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to caring for, celebrating, and advancing the world-renown cultural heritage of Columbus, Indiana. He has a long history of creating unique solutions to complex cultural heritage challenges and occasionally writes about his work.

Kathryn Armstrong is an arts and cultural leader and visual artist, whose work is centered around making communities stronger through place-based activation and civic engagement. Kathryn has served as the executive director of the Columbus Area Arts Council (CAAC) since 2016. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, including in several project-based residencies.

Kent Schuette is a professor emeritus of architecture and urban design at Purdue University based in New Harmony. As a landscape architect, Schuette has studied the Athenaeum extensively.


Tuesday, April 12 @5:15-6:15 PM CT || Opera House DINNER & Listening party


Tuesday, April 12 @7:30 PM ET/6:30-7:30 PM CT || Atheneum Utopian Architecture with Marsh Davis [president, Indiana Landmarks], Lourenzo Giple [deputy director of planning, preservation, & design, City of Indianapolis], Adam Thies [associate VP for capital planning at Indiana University]. Moderated by Anne Laker [writer & Social Alchemy symposium team member]. Join virtually here.

Lourenzo Giple is the Deputy Director of Planning, Preservation, and Design for the Department of Metropolitan Development. Through his work, he oversees the visionary, long-term projects of city development, day-to-day planning, historic preservation, transportation planning, and urban design. Lourenzo has poured his time, energy, and heart into helping others feel more connected to people, places, and spaces in the city.

Marsh Davis is President of Indiana Landmarks, the nation’s largest statewide preservation organization. Davis has served as a trustee of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and Chairman of Preservation Action, the nation’s grass-roots public policy organization. For his work in historic preservation, Davis was named a Sagamore of the Wabash by Governor Frank O’Bannon.

Adam D. Thies is the vice president for capital planning at Indiana University. Thies has led and managed many of Indiana’s premier planning and design projects, including planning for the 2012 Super Bowl Legacy Neighborhood Project, the redesign of Indianapolis’ Monument Circle, and the creation of a plan for midtown Indianapolis.


Tuesday, April 12 @7:30 PM ET/6:30-7:30 PM CT || Townwide Choice of activities: tours, walks, performance. In-person or join virtually via Instagram live @bigcarpix


Wednesday, April 13

Wednesday, April 13 @10 AM ET/9-9:45 AM CT || Rapp-Owen Granary Inclusion & access with the Indianapolis Cultural Trail & Neighborhood Development with DeAmon Harges [neighborhood organizer] & Brian Payne [CEO, Central Indiana Community Foundation & driving force behind the Cultural Trail]. Join virtually here.

DeAmon Harges is a faculty member of the Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) Institute, Community Organizer, Creator of the Learning Tree, and chairperson of the Grassroots Grantmakers Association Board , and featured in the new documentary “The Antidote: On Kindness in America” – is a frequent speaker on ABCD in secular and religious groups around the world, and is a layperson at Broadway UMC, Indianapolis.

Brian Payne is the president and CEO of Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF) and The Indianapolis Foundation. Payne is also the founder and founding artistic director of the Indianapolis Cultural Trail: A Legacy of Gene & Marilyn Glick, a project that has been recognized as the best North American example of a big, bold, transformative project that is changing the way we think of cities and city life. As one of six community foundation executives on the design task force of NEON – Nexus for Equity + Opportunity Nationwide and CICF, Payne is part of a national effort in dismantling structured and systemic racism to achieve economic and cultural mobility.


Wednesday, April 13 @11 AM ET/10-10:50 AM CT || Rapp-Owen Granary Utopian Literature/Writing in New Harmony with Susan Neville [fiction writer/essayist], Matthew Graham [Indiana Poet Laureate], Adrian Matejka [poet & IU professor] & Kevin McKelvey [poet & UIndy professor]. Join virtually here.

Susan Neville is the author of seven books of creative nonfiction and three collections of short fiction. Her most recent book, The Town of Whispering Dolls, won the Catherine Doctorow Prize for Innovative Fiction and her first book, Invention of Flight, won the Flannery O’Connor Award. She is the Demia Butler Professor of English Emeritus at Butler University and has written about New Harmony in several essays.

Adrian Matejka is the author of six books, most recently a mixed media collection inspired by Funkadelic, Standing on the Verge & Maggot Brain (Third Man Books, 2021) and a collection of poems Somebody Else Sold the World (Penguin, 2021). His book “The Big Smoke” (Penguin, 2013). His first graphic novel, Last On His Feet, is forthcoming from Liveright/Norton in February 2023. He is the Ruth Lilly Professor of Poetry at Indiana University Bloomington and was Poet Laureate of the state of Indiana in 2018-19.

Matthew Graham is the author of four collections of poetry and is the recipient of awards and fellowships from the Academy of American Poets, Pushcart, the Indiana Arts Commission and the Vermont Studio Center. Graham is a Professor Emeritus of English at the University of Southern Indiana and is the current Indiana State Poet Laureate. He is married to the painter Katie Waters.

Kevin McKelvey is a place-based poet, writer, designer, and social practice artist. McKelvey has been a writer-in-residence in the Long-Term Ecological Reflections program at the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest in Oregon and at Isle Royale National Park in Lake Superior. This inspired him to bring this model to Indiana, working with local land trusts to create annual, centuries-long creative and scientific reflections on natural areas, including NICHES Land Trust and ACRES Land Trust. His work in novels, essays, social practice, and placemaking continue to explore the intersections of art, writing, ecology, gardening, food, and farming.


Wednesday, April 13 @ noon ET/11 AM-12 PM CT || Rapp-Owen Granary Utopic Cultural Projects Conversation – Visual Art, Music & Movement with Keesha Dixon [Asante Arts Institute of Indianapolis], Docey Lewis [designer], Lauren Curry [Indy Movement Arts Collective] & Oreo Jones [musician & Big Car artists & WQRT FM manager]. Join virtually here.

Sean Oreo Jones is an Indianapolis-based artist. Jones founded “Chreece,” one of the Midwest’s largest hip-hop festivals. In 2015, he became the sound artist in residence at Big Car Collaborative’s Listen Hear, curating and managing exhibitions and developing the low-power radio station, 99.1 FM WQRT. Oreo Jones has released over 9 studio albums, participated in artist residencies, and received awards for his work in the hip-hop community.

Docey Lewis began her career in San Francisco as an artist, weaver and yarn designer, developing fabrics for fashion and interiors. Lewis is the chief design consultant for 3form, Inc’s Full Circle product line and is an advisor to the Madagascar artisan and farmer focused Conservation for Poverty Alleviation. Lewis also sits on the boards of Robert Lee Blaffer Foundation, the New Harmony Business Associates, and on the Advisory Committee of the New Harmony Gallery of Contemporary Art.

Lauren Curry is the executive director at Indianapolis Movement Arts Collective. After returning to Indianapolis from Texas, she worked with No Exit Performance, Phoenix Rising Dance Company, and performed at the Regional Alternative Dance Festival in Kalamazoo, Michigan. She is most proud of her work with Indy Movement Arts; programming weekly classes, presenting national artists in Indy, and investing in local dance-makers.

Keesha Dixon is the executive director of the Asante Art Institute of Indianapolis, Inc. She has been a teaching/performing artist for the past 19 years and serves on local and national committees to further the tradition of Black storytelling or to improve the quality of life for others. She is a conscious-minded culture worker striving to preserve and protect the true history of Africans, enslaved Africans, and African Americans. Outside of work, Keesha’s hobbies include textile artist, ethnic clothing designer, gardening, vocalist, Yoruba drumming, and motorcycling.


Wednesday, April 13 @12-1 PM CT || Rapp-Owen Granary LUNCH & Listening party


Wednesday, April 13 @2:15 PM ET/1:15-2:15 PM CT || Atheneum Dreaming of New Worlds: World Building for Community Work with Maurice Broaddus [author]. Join virtually here.

Maurice Broaddus is a community organizer and teacher. His work has appeared in places like Lightspeed Magazine, Black Panther: Tales from Wakanda, Weird Tales, Magazine of F&SF, and Uncanny Magazine. Some of his stories have been collected in The Voices of Martyrs. His books include the sci-fi novel Sweep of Stars; the steampunk works, Buffalo Soldier and Pimp My Airship; the middle grade detective novels, and The Usual Suspects and Unfadeable. His project, Sorcerers, is being adapted as a television show for AMC. He’s also an editor at Apex Magazine.


Wednesday, April 13 @3:30 PM ET/2:30-3:30 PM CT || Atheneum Imaginary Cities – Utopia & Dystopia in Thought, in Art, & in Culture with Darran Anderson [author] (via zoom). Join virtually here.

Darran Anderson is an Irish writer residing in Scotland focused on the intersections of urbanism, culture, technology, and politics. Anderson is the author of Imaginary Cities (chosen as best book of 2015 by the Financial Times), The Guardian, the A.V. Club, and other publications. A work of creative nonfiction, Imaginary Cities roams through space, time, and possibility, mapping cities of sound, melancholia, and the afterlife, where time runs backward or which floats among the clouds. In doing so, Imaginary Cities seeks to move beyond the cliches of psychogeography and hauntology, to not simply revisit the urban past, or our relationship with it, but to invade and reinvent it. Anderson has also co-edited the journals The Honest Ulsterman, 3:AM Magazine, Dogmatika, and White Noise.


Wednesday, April 13 @7:30-9:30 PM CT || Atheneum Outdoor movie screening of Black Panther (indoors at the Atheneum in case of bad weather).


Some tips if you’re joining us in person

Mornings: While we plan to have coffee and water available, we also encourage you to get breakfast at one of multiple excellent options in town: Main Cafe at Capers (602 Main St. enter at the side door) has a great and affordable diner-style breakfast and excellent cinnamon rolls, Black Lodge (610 Church St.) offers great coffee roasted on site as well as local pastries, and Sara’s (500 Church St.) which offers breakfast options. Sara’s is closed Tuesdays. The Main opens at 6 am and the others open at 8 am.

Evenings: While everyone who is around Tuesday evening is invited to a big communal meal at the Opera House, other evenings are dining on your own. Sunday night, most things are closed other than the higher-end restaurant, Mary Scott’s. We will have snacks at the Emily St. John Mandel zoom watch party at the Inn on Sunday evening. On Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday nights, the best option is the Yellow Tavern at 521 Church St. It offers a variety of good bar food and excellent bread pudding. The American Legion at 516 Church St. is closed Monday and Tuesday nights but open Wednesday and also has good food, including pizza. The public is welcome there. Also, the west side of Evansville is a 30-minute drive. We really like Gerst Bavarian Haus at 2100 W Franklin St. It is open until 9 pm on Sunday, closed Monday, and open until 10 pm Tuesday/Wednesday.

0
View Post
Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday

At Big Car Collaborative, we’re working every day to be builders in a world that sometimes feels like it’s falling down. We team up to build community through art exhibitions and public events that welcome people and encourage connecting with each other. 
We’re rebuilding vacant houses into affordable homes for artists who support our city. We’re using the tools of art — including our own FM radio station — to build a future for everyone filled with creativity, camaraderie, and smiles. Please help us keep building by making a tax-deductible donation today. 

Click here to donate.

0
View Post
DigIndy is back!

DigIndy is back!

Big Car is excited to announce that we’re teaming up with Citizens Energy Group on the DigIndy Art Project for the third year! This time we’ll collaborate to paint a mural on Citizens’ pump station located at 3750 West Washington Street in Indianapolis.

DigIndy started in 2018 to use public art to raise awareness of the DigIndy Tunnel System, a 28-mile network of tunnels located 250 feet under the city. Once complete in 2025, DigIndy will virtually eliminate sewer overflows into area waterways.

In 2019, DigIndy partnered with Big Car to highlight some of the major changes taking place under our feet and allow community members to become involved. Eight Indianapolis-based artists developed manhole cover designs to visualize our city’s future with enhanced waterways as a result of the DigIndy Tunnel System. 

In 2020, we worked with local artist and illustrator, Ess McKee, to paint a colorful mural on a pump house building at Meridian Street and Westfield Avenue near the canal, an important water source for Indianapolis.

Just like DigIndy will help improve our waterways, the DigIndy Art Project enhances our community’s quality of life with art.

We are reaching out to ask for your help in designing this year’s mural. Please take this survey and tell us what you love about Indy’s waterways to inspire this year’s art.

Thank you for being part of this exciting project!