2019 Grantee Projects

Art Alley

By: John Valentino
Amount granted: $8,000
Location: Covington, LA
Website: St. Tammany Art Association

Image courtesy of John Valentino.

Art Alley will be a new, permanent, and interactive LED screen arch over Hotel Alley in Covington LA.  It will provide a new exhibition space to present video, animation and interactive artworks from diverse artists from across the country. Each arch will be made from hot roll square steel tube. Each of the 20 steel arches that creates the video arch will contain 900 RGB LED pixels along with four infrared proximity sensors along the walls and two long range ultrasonic range finders to detect the movements of visitors below. This project will bring university student artists together as mentors to high school students.


Campanha Linha Vermelha / Red Line Campaign

By: Red Line Campaign
Amount granted: $6,000
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Website: Campanha Linha Vermelha

Image courtesy of Red Line Campaign.

Campanha Linha Vermelha will create knitting groups and organize special events to contribute to the 52Km of red knitted line line representing the different voices contributions to the cause of climate change and stopping oil & gas drilling/fracking in Portugal. The red knitted line will be made out of all sorts of natural, Portugese yarn in various tones of red. During the events, the organizers will teach people how to knit while discussing the serious issues of climate change and fossil fuel extraction in Portugal.


Community Speaks: The Festival

By: Circus Zambia
Amount granted: $5,000
Location: Lusaka, Zambia
Website: Circus Zambia

Image courtesy of Circus Zambia.

Community Speaks: The Festival will be an interactive, immersive multi-disciplinary art experience aimed at helping people unite and rethink prejudice and stereotypes.

Community Speaks is a program that has different activities. The primary event will take place in September 2019, and the artworks created will remain accessible to the public beyond then. This project is a sequel to a Burning Man Global Art Grant project executed by Circus Zambia in 2018. The 2018 project was a great success and received positive feedback from Chibolya residents, audience members, and engaged artists. This year, the process will be repeated with some improvements to build the program up to be a self-supporting annual event.



By: Ukrainian Burners
Amount granted: $9,000
Location: Kyiv, Ukraine
Website: Dance In Me

Image courtesy of DIM, HackLab, the Ukraine Burners Community.

DANCE IN ME (DIM) will be an interactive art and sound installation that will allow everyone to become a musiсian. The installation will be a musical instrument made of laser-ranging modules, which read the distance to the human body and transform this data into unique sound created by dancer(s). Physically, DIM will consist of 64 blocks made of acrylic transparent plastic аnd aluminum. These blocks will connect into one big instrument (4×4 meters) which will hang from the ceiling with metal cables and chains.


The Digital Sideshow

By: Owen Lowery
Amount granted: $10,000
Location: Athens County, OH
Website: The Digital Sideshow

Image courtesy of Owen Lowery.

The Digital Sideshow will be a traveling participatory event aimed at exposing diverse and overlooked communities to the accessibility of the digital arts. It will bring interactive exhibits, creative workshops, and learning resources to distressed and at-risk Ohio counties. Part carnival midway, part interactive art gallery, part maker space, The Digital Sideshow will be a two-day event taking place in five communities across the Ohio River Valley & Appalachia regions during the Spring of 2020. It will set up its traveling exhibits in local libraries, makerspaces, and various community centers. All events will be free and open to the public.


East African Soul Train

By: Charlotte Emily Spowage
Amount granted: $5,000
Location: Zanzibar, Tanzania
Website: East African Soul Train

Image courtesy of Poppy Sewage.

East African Soul Train (EAST) will be a 7-day residency and interactive experience centred around a journey on Tanzania’s historic railway in June 2019. EAST will bring artists together to co-create an emotional and creative moving installation, which will inspire risk-taking and interdisciplinary experimentation, and will cultivate new audiences.



By: De Kai
Amount granted: $6,000
Location: Oakland, CA
Website: De Kai

Image courtesy of De Kai.

A rap battle bot will be created to freestyle against any challenger who walks up, and battle well-known hip hop artists. Free/Style will engage underprivileged Oakland youth communities in workshops during the funding year to build their own machines while learning interactive art practices. The rap battle bot will be constructed to appear almost holographically as an augmentation to our physical reality. While the submitted primary image shows a conventional LED screen from an early experimental prototype, the intent is to instead use a see-through panel with the bot at near life size, ensconced within a large weatherproof sealed housing of industrial metal and bulletproof glass that suggests the bot is standing in its own industrial sound booth.


Lead to Life: A People’s Alchemy for Regeneration

By: Lead to Life
Amount granted: $5,000
Location: Oakland, CA
Website: Lead to Life

Image courtesy of Lead to Life.

In collaboration with La Maraña, Nietas de Nono, and the San Antón community, Lead to Life will facilitate a guns-to-shovel ceremony, tree-plantings, and imagination workshops in the San Antón barrio in Carolina, Puerto Rico during the Dia de Los Muertos 2019 weekend. A community development organization in Puerto Rico, has invited Lead to Life to bring their healing justice art praxis to the island: guns→ shovels→ trees→ education, healing & transformation. In a series of participative, community-led ceremonies, Lead to Life will transform 15 guns into 15 shovels to plant 50 trees across the community of San Anton at sites impacted by violence, sacred sites, and food gardens.


Marche du Nain Rouge Neighborhood Parade Art Workshops

By: Marche du Nain Rouge
Amount granted: $5,000
Location: Detroit, MI
Website: Marche du Nain Rouge

Image courtesy of Marche du Nain Rouge.

The Marche du Nain Rouge Neighborhood Parade Art Workshops will comprise one to three neighborhood workshops for the annual Marche du Nain Rouge community art parade in Detroit’s historic Cass Corridor. While the parade is a single day, the workshops will take place over months. The Marche’s Neighborhood Art Workshops will take on the look, feel, and inspiration of the neighborhoods that are engaged and the outcome of the workshops may manifest as themed costumes, human powered chariots, and any other type of creative self-expression to highlight neighborhood pride.


The New Social Station

By: Omer Kalderon with 1mpact
Amount granted: $4,000
Location: Tel Aviv, Israel
Website: New Social Station

Image courtesy of Omer Kalderon.

Surrounded by a diversity of communities and cultures, the Central Bus Station in Tel Aviv the abandoned 1st floor will be transformed into an interactive art space with local artists & participants. The New Social Station will host an event with interactive art installations. The event will cover an area that includes 100 abandoned shops and empty cinema theatres; the look and feel of the space will change as people move about.



By: Kaitlin Bryson & Hollis Moore
Amount granted: $5,000
Location: Siddharthanagar, Nepal
Websites: Hollis Moore / Kaitlin Bryson

Image courtesy of Hollis Moore.

The Sympoiesis artists will travel to the Pratiman-Neema Memorial Health Institute in Nepal for a collaboration with the Lumbini Center for Sustainability (LCS) and local community members to make permanent restorative sculptural interventions and provide outreach along the sacred and polluted Danda River. The project will include multiple parts: a Floating wetland sculpture combining phyto (plants) and myco (fungi) remediation; Ecological Monitoring Sculptures installed along the river for the public to engage with; and Citizen-science toolkits for local community members to use and “perform” with to collect long-term data. The design of these works will be developed with the community and in relation to the ecology.


Toddlers / a playground

By: Project BLNK
Amount granted: $6,000
Location: Athens, Greece
Website: Project Blnk

Image courtesy of Project BLNK.

Toddlers will be a three-day interactive social experiment based on art and dialogue to investigate the importance of play and how play evolves after childhood. Toddlers is a maze-like playground with multiple areas, housing interactive works of different media. The venue consists of two floors, multiple rooms of different sizes, hallways, stairways, a spacious balcony, and an open-air garden. Interactive installations and guest-engaging performances are spread through the spaces of the playground, creating a never-ending roaming. Additionally, the two music stages offer a diverse program of electronic music soundscapes, accompanied by light shows and video installations. Toddlers will take place in November 2019 in Athens, Greece and will be free to the public.


Trash Temple

By: Vandaloop Collective
Amount granted: $3,000
Location: Athens, Greece
Website: Vandaloop Collective

Image courtesy of Vandaloop Collective.

Trash Temple will be a site-specific large-scale installation built collectively from golden, empty beer cans found and collected in the culturally diverse neighborhood of Exarcheia in the center of Athens, Greece. Trash Temple will be co-created by the community on the three upper floors on top of a business building. Used golden beer cans will be collected from the streets in order to provide the base material of large-scale installations: golden hybrids from inorganic to botanical, reptilian and bird-like creatures will occupy the space, build gates and tunnels inspired by Maya architecture, climb up walls until the rooftop to be seen from the streets of the neighborhood.


Tumaini Festival: A Cultural Exchange Arts Festival at Dzaleka Refugee Camp

By: Tumaini Letu
Amount granted: $1,000
Location: Dzaleka Refugee Camp, Dowa, Malawi
Website: Tumaini Festival

Image courtesy of Trésor Nzengu Mpauni.

Tumaini is a free, annual cultural exchange, music and arts festival at Dzaleka Refugee Camp in Malawi. The festival is run by refugees and draws thousands of people each year to celebrate peaceful co-existence through artistic expression. The 2019 edition will run from 31 October to 02 November and will feature music, poetry, comedy, films, theater, acrobatics, dance (traditional and contemporary), drumming, traditional food, arts exhibitions and creative trainings and workshops. During the festival lead-up from August to October 2019, pre-festival events will take place at Dzaleka, including workshops and trainings for young and aspiring artists in Dzaleka. The aim through these events is to create a platform for the learning and development of young artists from the Dzaleka community, linking them to the artistic community beyond Dzaleka.


Uhuru Threshold

By: Patrick Muvunga Trickpa and artists and builders at Opportunigee
Amount granted: $8,000
Location: Isingiro, Uganda
Website: Opportunigee

Image courtesy of Patrick Muvunga Trickpa.

Uhuru Threshold will be created by artists and builders at Opportunigee, the world’s first innovation hub created by and for refugees. The Uhuru Threshold sculpture will be designed and built by residents of the Nakivale Refugee Settlement. It will look like an open door through which you can enter at any time. On one side of the 33’ tall door, there will be shoe prints of three individuals — a man, woman, and child. On the other side of the door will be bare footprints of the three individuals. Uhuru Threshold will become a permanent landmark representative of, and freely accessible to the residents of Nakivale.

(Uhuru = freedom in KiSwahili)


Waste Art as a Therapy for Engaging Dementia Patients

By: Collective of Repair café Bengaluru foundation and Cognitive neurology clinic
Amount granted: $4,000
Location: Bengaluru, India

Image courtesy of Purna Sarkar.

The Project is about engaging dementia patients for therapy and fun over a period of one year. Dementia patients will engage in creative activities guided by artists and other mentors to produce small works of art from waste, which will culminate in the creation of an art garden at a public place. The program will consist of a series of 30 workshops which are conducted inside the local hospital and 6 workshops in a public space. The last of workshop in the public space will be the culmination of the project. This workshop will complete the garden from waste material and it will leave the installation in the public space for public community engagement for a period of one week.


YouthArtCode: Tech is Art—Digital Garden

By: YouthArtCode
Amount granted: $10,000
Location: Sacramento, CA
Website: YouthArtCode

Image courtesy of YouthArtCode.

Youth Art Code will involve youth artists and engineers to design and construct a collaborative, immersive digital art installation. The “garden” installation will be a temporary electronic/digital/paper garden in an open space, outdoors in an existing natural garden area. Over a period of several weeks, digital, paper, polymer, wood and glass elements will be designed and constructed primarily by youth. These elements will be placed within the natural garden to create a digital garden. The digital garden will be composed of many pieces: paper flowers, rocks and grasses, constructed animals based on paper and drones, plus numerous LED and fiber optic elements. Some pieces will be under 3 feet, other pieces will be up to 6 feet. The pieces will mimic items found in a typical garden but be composed of paper, clay, polymer, glass and electronic components.