Daily digest: Destination Crenshaw announces first artist cohort, Kanye’s original plan for Soldier Field, and more

Installation Nation

Daily digest: Destination Crenshaw announces first artist cohort, Kanye’s original plan for Soldier Field, and more

View of Destination Crenshaw's I AM Park. (Courtesy Perkins&Will)

Happy September and welcome to this mid-week edition of AN’s daily round-up of newsworthy odds-and-ends. Here’s what you need to know today:

Destination Crenshaw announces first round of artists tapped for South L.A. cultural corridor

Destination Crenshaw, a $100 million public-private public space initiative set to transform 1.3-miles of Crenshaw Boulevard in South Los Angeles into a community-focused arts and cultural corridor celebrating Black L.A., has announced the inaugural cohort of artists selected to create a series of permanent outdoor monuments. They are: Charles Dickson, Melvin Edwards, Maren Hassinger, Artis Lane, Alison Saar, Kehinde Wiley, and Brenna Youngblood. In total, 100 artists will be selected to create works for the in-progress Destination Crenshaw, making it the largest commissioned initiative ever undertaken for Black artists in the country. (Perkins&Will, just-announced National Design Award-winner Studio-MLA, and museum design and planning firm Gallagher & Associates are leading the project’s architectural/streetscape design, landscape design, and storytelling elements, respectively.)

“Destination Crenshaw is a community-led project, initiated in the conviction that residents of one of the world’s largest and most creative Black neighborhoods deserve to live in a beautiful, green, artistically impressive and economically strong environment,” said Jason W. Foster, president and chief operating officer of Destination Crenshaw in a statement. “As we move toward submitting the first designs to the City, we are committed to creating a permanent place for Black people in Los Angeles. We look forward to strengthening the connection between the community and these exceptional artists, all of whom have been, in some way, nurtured and inspired by the Crenshaw neighborhood.”

Kanye West denied permission to move his actual childhood home to Chicago’s Solider Field

For last week’s concluding DONDA listening event at Solider Field in Chicago, Kanye West erected a replica of his childhood South Side home smack-dab in the middle of the historic NFL stadium. Per the Chicago Sun-Times, the faithful facsimile of the house “served as a dramatic centerpiece” for the listening event “as dancers dressed in SWAT gear and a lineup of trucks continuously circled its perimeter at one point. To close out the show, West lit himself on fire (he was safely extinguished) and reenacted his wedding vows with a little help from Kim Kardashian, despite their pending divorce.”

As noted by the Sun-Times, West’s original plan wasn’t to build an ephemeral replica of the home in question but to move the entire structure, which West reportedly purchased last year for $225,000, to Solider Field. City officials, for obvious reasons, blocked the house-relocation scheme.

“Moving a home in Chicago is a very technical process that requires structural engineer reports and multiple city permits,” explained the city’s Buildings Department in a statement. “The request to move the house at 7815 S. South Shore Dr. was denied last week because no permit application had been received to excavate and move the vacant property which is also in Demolition Court.”

H/t to Chicago Sun-Times

Seeking Design Excellence in Northwest Arkansas

The Bentonville, Arkansas-based Walton Family Foundation has formally kicked off the application process for the sixth cycle of its Northwest Arkansas Design Excellence Program. Applications for the program are now being accepted through October 1 with a “focus on architects and firms experienced in inclusive public engagement, innovative neighborhood-scale projects or mixed-income and missing middle housing” per the Foundation.

Elaborated the Foundation in a press release:

“The Design Excellence Program selects professionals and projects based on four key principles: a commitment to strengthening public life; elevating standards of sustainability and resilience; celebrating local cultures and place; and building regional capacity. It is designed to accommodate nationally recognized, multi-disciplinary firms; smaller specialty firms; and young designers who may not yet be discovered. If selected, designers can participate for up to five years, or until they are chosen for a project. The program currently includes nearly 50 architecture and landscape architecture firms from 14 states, Canada, and Denmark.”

To date, the Design Excellence Program has supported 15 projects across the region’s five largest cities including Ross Barney Architects’ recently completed Railyard Park in the city of Rogers and Bentonville’s Thaden School, designed by Eskew+Dumez+Ripple and Marlon Blackwell Architects.

These New York City cultural institutions will waive admission on the 17th annual Museum Day

After being scrapped last year for obvious reasons, the 2021 edition of Smithsonian Magazine‘s annual Museum Day event is set to take place on Saturday, September 18, and 6sqft has a full run-down of the participating museums. The Museum of Arts and Design, the Museum of the City of New York, the New York City Fire Museum, and the Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art at Snug Harbor are just a few Big Apple cultural institutions observing the free-admissions event.

As always, holders of a special Museum Day pass will be granted access to participating museums gratis. (The downloadable Museum Day ticket, which provides general admission for two people, is also, of course, free.) As Amy Wilkins, chief revenue officer at Smithsonian Media, recently told USA TODAY: “Museum Day represents a national commitment to access, equity and inclusion and after a rough year and a half, we’re excited for museums to open their doors and offer these educational and cultural experiences to the public for free…” In total, more than 1,000 museums across the country are participating.

H/t to 6sqft

2021 CODAawards winners revealed

Wisconsin-based arts organization CODAworx has announced the winners of its prestigious annual awards program—now in its eighth year—that celebrates the crème de la crème of site-specific international public art installations. This year’s winners are, as in the past, a globe-spanning bunch, hailing from the the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, China, Germany, and Colombia. They, listed by category, are: