City Gallery's 2013 Top 10

In the spirit of end-of-year “Best of” lists, we thought we’d share our own City Gallery top 10.  In 2013, our staff, artists and friends have been . . .

10. Creative Placemaking -- In June, we received our first national level grant and the largest grant we’ve received to date when we were selected as one of 54 (out of 1200 applications) recipients of an ArtPlace grant for our work collaborating with many partners to bring vibrancy to the greater King Park area.  Since June,  the City Gallery art shows celebrated this area in unique ways (see Jed Dorsey’s King Park work in the City Gallery til the end of the year), as has much of our work in the community.


Josh Rush

9. Exploring our city neighborhoods -- whether by bike (Josh Rush’s “Indy City by Bike” in October), flying boat (Kyle Ragsdale’s “Dreamboats” in June), or stroller (Emma Overman’s “A Stroll Through Mapleton-Fall Creek” in May), we’ve had lots of opportunities to see our city in a new way.


The Bindery

8. Fashioning a community -- Pattern Magazine set up their offices here for the summer.   Pinterest pages and photo shoots, the community co-working space -- the Bindery, and intern collaboration laid the groundwork for a partnership that is still continuing.

berenice and ivy tech students

Global Art Exchange artist, Berenice Rarig and Ivy Tech students

7.  Making new friends from far-flung places -- In April, we had the privilege of welcoming Australian artist Berenice Rarig for our second annual Global Arts Exchange.  Berenice brought scarves knit from paint, 4-to-1 chain mail made from her own hair, and a sarcophagus made of 60,000 chicken wishbones.  Berenice and her team of helpers spent the month of April in the City Gallery working on community based projects and sharing their work with many in the city.


City Gallery billboard, 16th & Delaware Streets

6. Building -- a better food system (Food Con -- Ben Madeska’s art celebrating food in July), neighborhood (Kathryn Dart’s “Built, Building, Build” in September featuring St. Clair Place rehabs), and our new favorite billboard.

5. Celebrating heroes -- The Neighborhood Ballad Project was the vision of three of our interns, who researched the lives of modern and historical heroes (and villains), composed expressive poetry and original music, and combined it all together into moving spoken word ballads which have been performed all over the city.


CD cover, Paul Smallman's King Park neighborhood songwriting project

4. Singing Stories:  When Paul Smallman, our first singer-songwriter fellow was invited to spend the summer with us, we told him he would be writing a song a week about Indianapolis.  After receiving ArtPlace funding for creative placemaking in King Park, we asked him to focus on the mostly empty Rebuilding Neighborhoods Project on the east edge of the neighborhood.  Soon, every Friday “intern and staff happy hour” featured the debut of Paul’s new song of the week.


Quincy Owens' "Mouma"

3. Weaving together a community -- In the first show of the year, Quincy Owens created an environment for exploring community with “Koinonia,” a new collection of sculptures and collages which led to the creation of “Colonization of Commonality,” a collection of giant sculptures with the voices of friends and neighbors sharing their hopes and disappointments, which travelled to ArtPrize in Grand Rapids this summer.

brian at ff

Brian Allee, Re-lit artist reception

2.  Scavenging:  Brian Allee recycled found objects from the Old Northside and Herron Morton neighborhoods into one-of-a kind light fixtures for “Re-lit” which opened in February.  In March, Kipp Normand found his “refuse muse” again with “Trash,” collages made largely of old advertisements torn from the attics of abandoned homes in Fountain Square.  Aaron Thornburg traipsed all over the King Park Rebuilding Neighborhoods Project area collecting natural and manmade objects for his November show, “Layers

1. Coming Home -- One of the things we do in the City Gallery is help people find their place in  urban Indianapolis neighborhoods.  This year, we’ve made many new friends, who have become neighbors, as we have helped people connect to the amazing downtown community.  And, we’re thankful for the welcoming neighbors who’ve invited new folks for dinner, answered their questions, and helped them move in.

We’re so thankful that each of you are, in some way, part of our community.  We’ll see you in 2014!