Daily digest: Instagram gives grants to Black designers, a revamped Harlem River waterfront takes shape, and more

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Daily digest: Instagram gives grants to Black designers, a revamped Harlem River waterfront takes shape, and more

Instagram and the Brooklyn Museum have partnered to give grants to emerging Black Designers (Courtesy Instagram)

Welcome back to another Tuesday—this one rife with news about art, design, and what’s going on at the AIA’s online-only 2021 Conference on Architecture.

Here’s what you need to know today:

Instagram’s teams with the Brooklyn Museum to hand out $130,000 in grants to Black designers

Instagram’s official design account (@design) has partnered with the Brooklyn Museum for its new #BlackDesignVisionaries grant program, which launches today. From today through July 16, interested Black designers between the ages of 18 and 30 can apply here to have their work reviewed by a committee led by art critic and writer Antwaun Sargent. Three designers will receive grants of $10,000 to help further their careers, and one small design business no older than ten years will receive a $100,000 grant. A shortlist will be unveiled sometime this fall.

Venus Williams will close out the 2021 AIA Conference on Architecture

The American Institute of Architects’ (AIA) first online-only Conference on Architecture, moved to the cloud due to ongoing concerns about the spread of COVID, is opening with a keynote from Spanish celebrity chef José Andrés; now, the institute has announced that tennis superstar Venus Williams will close the conference out in August. Instead of running in a single continuous block, this year’s conference will open this Thursday, June 17, then reconvene on July 8, July 29, and finally August 19. Williams will end the event at 4:20 p.m. on the final day, and according to the AIA:

Venus’ keynote wraps up A’21 with a powerful message about the need for change, purpose-driven leadership, and resilience and building a better future that’s inclusive, equitable, and sustainable, together.

On the fourth anniversary of the Grenfell Tower fire, survivors call for a memorial

It’s been four years to the day since Grenfell Tower caught fire in West London and left 72 dead, and the charred remnants are still standing as a testament to the government’s failures in regulating the flammable cladding used in a renovation project. Although the building’s remains are being stabilized for its ultimate demolition, some survivors are asking that the structure be preserved and reused as a permanent memorial to those who lost their lives—and the topic is extra charged given that Muslim members of the community are unable to bury the loved ones they lost.

H/t to Building Design Online

The Harlem River waterfront revamp inches closer to reality

New renderings and details of the Starr Whitehouse-designed waterfront park along the Harlem River have been revealed, showing a seven-acre landscape divided into four discrete sections. Running along the east side of Manhattan from 125th Street to 132nd Street (currently closed off and being used to stage equipment for the New York City Department of Transportation). Of the imagery released, the most eye-catching feature is a proposed new sculpture from artist Eto Otitigbe: a twisting, helical steel installation that will act as a pipe organ and turn wind from the East River into music. Once completed, the new park will link up with the East River Esplanade.

H/t to Patch

Massachusetts is replacing eight bridges in eight weekends

Talk about an infrastructure summer. The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is reportedly kicking its weekend work into overdrive this summer under a new $60 million Acceler-8 program. Starting June 18, MassDOT will repair eight turnpike bridges along Westborough and Southborough each weekend using precast concrete, with plans to wrap up by August 18. Although this sort of rapid bridge repair can cost up to 20 percent more than comparable methods, it’s expected that commuters will be able to drive over the replacement spans only hours after work is finished.

H/t to the Engineering News-Record

The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe will triple in size

The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is growing; the 5,000-square-foot museum dedicated to the modernist painter’s work is moving from its current location into a new building that will clock in at 13,000 square feet. New York-based Gluckman Tang Architects is designing the new museum, which, from renderings, seems like it will hew close to the original building’s adobe structure. The new museum is expected to open sometime in 2024, approximately 500 feet from the original.

H/t to the New York Times