SPARTANBURG, S.C. (Nov. 9, 2015) — Spartanburg Mayor Junie White announced today all 10 neighborhoods that applied to take part in Seeing Spartanburg In A New Light have been selected to participate in the project.
Seeing Spartanburg in a New Light is a temporary public art project supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies through its Public Art Challenge initiative. In October 2014, Bloomberg Philanthropies invited mayors to collaborate with artists and arts organizations to develop innovative temporary public art projects that engage communities, enhance creativity, and enrich the vibrancy of cities. Over 230 U.S. cities submitted proposals, affirming the many ways in which the arts can celebrate, address, and advance critical urban issues. Bloomberg Philanthropies selected Spartanburg as one of the four cities to receive up to $1 million to develop temporary public art projects.
As part of Seeing Spartanburg an a New Light, artist Erwin Redl is collaborating with the City’s police department and participating neighborhood associations to design and develop LED light installations that transform open spaces and create more vibrant neighborhoods. The project builds on the momentum of National Night Out, an annual event that promotes crime prevention efforts, police- community partnership and neighborhood camaraderie.
The City of Spartanburg received a total of 10 applications from eligible neighborhood associations to participate in the project. While originally intending to select only five neighborhoods, Erwin Redl and the Selection Committee chose to support all ten proposals based on their promising, innovative spirit and the feasibility of working with local students and industrial arts instructors at Daniel Morgan Career Center.
All installations will be designed in collaboration with international artist Erwin Redl. The neighborhoods are:
- Beaumont Village
- Downtown Spartanburg
- Forest Park
- Hampton Heights
- Highland Neighborhood
- Maxwell Hills/Duncan Park
- South Converse
- Andrews Farm & Converse Heights will participate in a joint installation on the Cottonwood Trail that connects both neighborhoods.
“Seeing Spartanburg in a New Light is providing a great opportunity for our communities to work together on a project that has the capacity to truly transform our city,” said Mayor White. “I look forward to seeing how this project engages our citizens and police department as they create a unique experience that can be shared by everyone.”
The selection committee, comprised of city officials and art experts, carefully reviewed each neighborhood written submission, interviewed each group and conducted extensive site visits. Submissions were evaluated on a number of factors, including potential for community engagement, site accessibility, and feasibility to host a work of art. The selection committee included:
- Christopher Banks, Master Police Officer, Spartanburg Police Department
- Elizabeth Goddard, Executive Director, Spartanburg Art Museum
- Daniel Gordon, Sergeant, Spartanburg Police Department
- Regina Nowak, Captain, Spartanburg Police Department
- Erwin Redl, Light and Media Artist
- Kimberly Ritter, Officer, Spartanburg Police Department
- Mark Sloan, Director and Chief Curator, Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art
Beginning in December 2015, Erwin Redl will collaborate with the selected neighborhood associations to design and develop the light installations. The design process will take approximately three months, with the fabrication and installation scheduled for April through July 2016. The installations will be unveiled at National Night Out on Aug. 2, 2016 and will remain open to the public through 2017.
“Working with the Spartanburg community has been such an inspiring experience,” said artist Erwin Redl. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to explore the city’s extensive creative resources, and work with such talented neighborhoods in designing installations that I hope will engage the community in a meaningful way.”
Seeing Spartanburg in a New Light is a partnership among Erwin Redl, The Arts Partnership of Greater Spartanburg, and the City of Spartanburg to transform open spaces and create safer, more vibrant neighborhoods. By bringing site-specific art into Spartanburg neighborhoods, the project will foster greater understanding of both the artistic process and the transformative impact of public art. More information about Seeing Spartanburg in a New Light can be found at www.cityofspartanburg.org/new-light.
About The Arts Partnership of Greater Spartanburg
The mission of The Arts Partnership of Greater Spartanburg, Inc. is to provide cultural leadership for Greater Spartanburg by developing, strengthening, and promoting the scope, excellence, and educational role of the arts, humanities, and sciences, and to further their significance in the life of our community and all of its citizens. Founded in 1968 with a current budget of $2.1 million, The Arts Partnership is the oldest and largest countywide arts agency in the state of South Carolina and is serving as the lead Arts Agency and Project Manager for Seeing Spartanburg in a New Light.
About the Artist
Erwin Redl is an Austrian-born digital artist who currently lives in Bowling Green, Ohio. In 1993, after his studies at the Vienna Music Academy, he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship for computer art studies at School of Visual Arts, New York, (MFA 1995). He lived in New York from 1993-2007 and moved to rural Ohio in 2007. Mr. Redl was featured as part of the 2002 Whitney Biennial, when he covered the museum’s facade with LED veils. He created a sound and light installation for the Austrian Pavilion at the World Expo in Zaragoza, Spain (2008). The Pacific Design Center’s Red Building in Los Angeles features four installations by the artist (2013). His largest work is a 590 ft. long outdoor LED-installation at the Wexner Center in Columbus, Ohio (2010). The artist’s work is collected by prominent institutions, such as the Whitney Museum New York, the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, the Milwaukee Art Museum and Borusan Contemporary Istanbul
as well as by many private collectors.
About Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bloomberg Philanthropies’ mission is to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: Public Health, Environment, Education, Government Innovation and the Arts. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s charitable activities, including his foundation and his personal giving. In 2014, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $462 million. For more information on the philanthropy, please visit bloomberg.org or follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @BloombergDotOrg.