2020-2021 Grant Recipients

Art For Racial Justice Grants FY2021

New music inspired by Cambridge’s 19th century African American abolitionists. Poems celebrating local scientists of color. Concerts of classical music by underrepresented composers. A curriculum to decenter whiteness in contemporary dance. These are among the nine projects that have been awarded Art for Racial Justice Grants by Cambridge Arts and the City of Cambridge. The new funding program—grants are $5,000 each, totaling $45,000 overall--support artists to create work with a lens of resilience and racial equity to benefit people who live or work in Cambridge.


Victoria Lynn Awkward, In “The Space Between: Building Pathways to Freedom Through Dance”
Grant Award: $5,000
Freedom is a messy endeavor. On the pathway to freedom, we see sacrifice, pain, courage, teamwork, vision, and action. In “The Space Between” is an evening length contemporary dance work seeking to amplify a dream of freedom for people of color. Performed by the artists of VLA DANCE with an original sound score by Aaron Brown (audiovisual artist) and Capella (poet/rapper), the work asks us to examine how we mobilize our own identity politics within our spheres of influence. Through five performances at The Dance Complex (Central Square Cultural District) from September 24-26, 2021, the performers will explore the social and introspective complexities that embody a search for freedom. These performances will be presented in accordance with health and safety regulations (distancing, mask wearing, etc.) and have the flexibility for adaptation to the digital space if necessary. The premiere of In the Space Between will be accompanied by the launch of the VLA Journal, a new publication highlighting New England based organizations committed to elevating the next generation of BIPOC leaders. The inaugural issue will focus on the central theme of identity politics, using photography, essays and interviews as tangible complements to the ephemeral work of dance performance.

Black History in Action for Cambridgeport, Black Canvas: Creating an Arts Center for Racial Justice in Cambridgeport
Grant Award: $5,000
We create Arts and Humanities youth programming aimed at igniting socially-grounded visions of a just future through educational engagements with music, dance, history, and spoken word. You can see some of the work we have done in this recent “Black Futures Matters” celebration organized by Black History in Action for Cambridgeport: https://vimeo.com/488229644/40f423ef66 For this project, we are especially focused on proactive measures to remedy and repair educational inequities faced by BIPOC students in the Cambridge public school system. We emphasize here the cognitive and pedagogical justice dimension of racial justice, recognizing that the kinds of representations and the spectrum of learning opportunities made available to students has a great impact on the development of their consciousness: i.e. their sense of self and self-worth, and their health and well-being. Cognitive justice in education is an important social determinant of health. This project is a racial justice intervention in high school education.

DuBois Orchestra, Inclusion in Classical Music Initiative
Grant Award: $5,000
The Du Bois Orchestra's Inclusion in Classical Music Initiative is a set of two free performances on September 4th and 5th 2021 that feature underrepresented composers in music as well as BIPOC soloists. For these performances, we will be hiring 2-3 BIPOC soloists/ensemble musicians to feature, as well as paying a small stipend to our regular ensemble musicians and administrative staff, and a BIPOC musicologist/ethnomusicologist to do a pre-concert lecture and Q&A. These performances will be held at First Church in Cambridge, unless the pandemic has yet to be resolved, in which we are talking to M.I.T. about Killian Hall, the Charles Hotel about the Regattabar, and Longy about Pickman Hall as potential backup venues to either livestream our performance with social distancing guidelines in place and limited/no audience, or for a recording space to pre-record our performance that will later be streamed live to our audience through YouTube, Facebook, and our website. The DBO programs works by marginalized composers alongside historically canonical pieces; this engages our audience by bringing them in with works they know well or recognize which in turn gives us the opportunity to expose them to unfamiliar pieces and educate them on the pervasiveness of this issue. For our ensemble, we make it a point to recruit BIPOC musicians as ensemble members and soloists to feature in our programming, while also having an artistic board comprised of BIPOC musicians and career administrators.

Mariona Lloreta, "Altars"
Grant Award: $5,000
“Altars” is an experimental short film highlighting black and brown men in Cambridge/Boston, which negotiates a space between darkness - dehumanization, erasure, violence and trauma - and light - life, truth, empowerment, community, love. Amidst the unforgiving streets, these black bodies are presented as sacred sanctuaries. Pulling from my own culture's “Día de Todos los Santos,” participants will stand on reimagined, colorful altars, adorned in regal softness - blurring the line between flesh and the indestructible essence that remains. A poetic spoken word narration in several languages by the mothers, daughters, wives, husbands and companions to these men will serve as a reminder of the communities that are left behind. As gentrification is quickly taking over several neighborhoods in Boston and as a Latina woman who is engaged to a black man and who has witnessed, like so many of us, countless unpleasant and uncalled for encounters with the local police, I aim for this piece to evoke our shared humanity and connectedness, but most of all the urgency and need to act now in a poetic, visually compelling manner.

Midday Movement Series, Decentering Whiteness in Contemporary Dance: Curriculum & Workshops
Grant Award: $5,000
Midday Movement Series seeks funds to create a curriculum to decenter whiteness in contemporary dance pedagogy. This work is crucial in order to move toward real and long- lasting racial equity and transformation within the professional contemporary dance sector in our city. In any dance class, dancers not only learn movements but also (sub)consciously learn to embody entire value systems which they then carry with them daily, in every space we occupy. This gives dance teachers the potential to be powerful instigators of change, and some dance forms (such as hip-hop styles) have already empowered generations to create powerful cultural shifts. MIDDAY sees immense need and immense potential impact by creating a curriculum for contemporary dance pedagogy specifically intended for the Cambridge dance community and that places decentering whiteness at its core.

Andrine Pierresaint, Black Girls Arts Incubator
Grant Award: $5,000
Black Girl Arts Incubator is an arts education & performance program for Black, African, and Caribbean girls between the ages of 13-19. Throughout these 18 weeks participants will explore the many layers of the choreopoem “For Colored Girls who have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow is Enuf” by Ntozake Shange. That, and the knowledge from artists such as Solange & Eartha Kitt will provide further inspiration as we write & choreograph our group piece. We will bind & decorate 60 copies, that will be distributed to those who’ve filled out the google form. Through our introspection, & the courage that it takes to trust each other with the weight of our personal stories, we are then able to make a collective creative offering to the greater community. By assembling the book with our own hands, we are honoring the love & vulnerability that is cultivated & so deeply needed during this time of isolation & uncertainty.

Jessica Roseman, Nourish Project
Grant Award: $5,000
As part of my 2021 Nourish Project, I’m gathering a group of Cambridge Black mothers to amplify and share their expertise in personal wellbeing. I’ll facilitate weekly small group Zoom sessions with Black moms, referred from The Center for Families (CFF), under the Cambridge Department of Human Service Programs. Together we will collaboratively cross the digital divide and create a meaningful artistic dance experience. Translators and funding for childcare will be provided for those who need assistance. There will be no requirement for participation other than availability and commitment to complete the project. Over 10 weekly sessions, we’ll discuss specific experiences and themes around embodiment and wellbeing. I’ll help translate the mom’s responses into shared movement phrases. No dance experience necessary, each mom will receive a custom personal dance centering on their individual answers, which we’ll all practice together. For example, if a mom described a lullaby and they thrill in rollercoasters, I’ll incorporate their song and swingy motions into their personal phrase. Each participant’s custom dance is a prescription for their self-satisfaction, shareable with their family.

Joshua Sariñana, The Poetry of Science
Grant Award: $5,000
Black, Latinx, and people of color (POCs) lack representation in many settings as compared to the percentage of the population they represent. There is a profound lack of diversity in publishing, which means we miss out on the voices of these poets and creative writers. Photography and mainstream media are bereft of, or misrepresent, POCs. And the racial/ethnic disparities we see across the sciences—so near to the heart of Cambridge itself—are stark. This project aims to advance racial justice through the intersection of the arts and sciences. We will open a call for submissions to Cambridge-based poets of color. Poets interested in participating will submit 3-5 poems which will be reviewed using a blind process. Once poets are chosen, they will work with local scientists of color to create a poem about their inspiration as scientists and their field of study. We will work with a local photographer of color to create portraits of each scientist. Poems and associated portraits will be printed and publicly installed at local businesses.

Kera Washington/Zili Misik, Project Misik Cambridge: Honoring Our Ancestor's March Towards Freedom
Grant Award: $5,000
Project Honor will be a collaborative 21st century new musical project, inspired by the activism of Cambridge’s 19th century African American abolitionists. Project Honor seeks to advance racial justice by voicing, through the creation of new musical compositions, the historical contributions and reverberations of Cambridge’s 19th Century African American residents and activists, teaching this largely still unsung history -- about our community’s ancestors -- to those of us living and working in Cambridge now. As Project Honor looks at how BIPOC communities of Cambridge thrived during other times of racial injustice, this project strives to inspire contemporary BIPOC communities and their co-conspirators, focusing on the successes of our ancestors that are still relevant to our continuing fight against persistent systemic racism and health disparities of today. Project Honor will bring together 10 collaborators, 7 of them BIPOC artists, to create new musical arrangements and compositions, for a live performance and for documentation in audio and video (documentary) recordings that also will be shared with the Cambridge community, (potentially) through CCTV and through our own online livestreaming.

Local Cultural Council Grants FY21

Thirty-one projects will receive grants totaling $119,882 from Cambridge Arts and the City of Cambridge’s Local Cultural Council Grants. This grassroots grants program, operated by the Massachusetts Cultural Council across the Commonwealth, supports Cambridge projects ranging from music to video to dance to literature. They represent the wealth of artistic activity across the city.

• India Discovery Center, New England Folk Poetry and Oral Literature Festival
Grant Award: $2,760.00
South Asian Poets of New England, a satellite organization of India Discovery Center, has been celebrating South Asian Folk Poetry and Oral Literature Festival annually since 2017. It celebrates the folk literature from Indian subcontinent as recalled by poets in New England. We propose to extend the effort to include the folk traditions in New England from the sea-faring people to the people in the highlands. We wish to bring together languages, stories and folktales from the traditions in a common theme of literature and poetry. We plan to reach out to all ethnic groups including the church and choir groups that deal with folklore and traditions. It will be a full-day event orchestrated with poetry recitations, musical renderings, choral groups and instrumental music.

• Titi Ngwenya, Brave Space Book Club
Grant Award: $500.00
The Brave Space Book Club (BSBC) is an intimate forum to discuss fiction and nonfiction books we’re curious about reading—a space to have open and frank conversations about books that broaden our knowledge of Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion (DEAI). The club meets on a monthly basis in 3 separate sessions allowing people to choose a time that works for their schedule. In the session, we frame the book discussions around DEAI topics. We pose questions, share interpretations, engage in self-reflection, listen to different viewpoints, and bond. Here is a list of some upcoming books: Conjure Women by Afia Atakora; Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson; How To Be an Anti-Racist by Ibram X Kendi;If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin; Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson; Beauty is a Verb: The New Poetry of Disability; and On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong.

• Chavi Bansal, World Music and Dance
Grant Award: $4,600.00
This project is a collaboration between Cambridge-based musicians and dancers from diverse backgrounds, culminating in 6 outdoor, socially distanced performances in Cambridge. The performance will feature three choreographers (Chavi Bansal, Flora Kim, and Ivana Jia) and three musicians (Lysander Jaffe, Lucy Little, and Afarin Nazarijou), with Chavi and Lysander coordinating the project. This work will draw on the movement language of three different styles of Asian dance (Indian, Korean, and Chinese) as well as Western modern dance vocabulary, pairing these dance styles with Persian and Balkan folk music. Through this work we will find a common language of rhythm and gesture that speaks across the borders oflanguage and culture. We will present this work in 6 outdoor performances across Cambridge in summer 2021 and live-stream the performance on social media.

• Brain Arts Organization, Inc., Damo Suzuki Performance
Grant Award: $2,530.00
We propose to bring pioneering Japanese singer Damo Suzuki to Cambridge, MA for an all ages concert of original material. Cambridge-based visual artists will contribute a video light show for the performance, and Cambridge-based musicians will back Suzuki’s band. BAO originally booked Suzuki, who has not performed in America since 2010, for a since-cancelled show in April 2020. The show will occur at Cambridge Community Center with access from the Central Square Red Line stop and the 1, 64, & 70 buses. We will announce the show’s new date and start selling tickets on February 1st. Doors will open at 8 pm, and music and visuals will go from 9-12. There will be two to-be-determined Cambridge-based opening acts. Attendance will follow COVID-19 guidelines. If necessary, the concert will have limited, socially distanced seating or be streamed online so all can experience this special concert.

• Cambridge Women’s Center, Free Creative Workshops for All /Women/
Grant Award: $4,600.00
This project will provide funding for 5-10 new or returning creative workshops at the CWC. There will be an open call for proposals, and selected group leaders will determine duration and scope. Groups will meet over Zoom and in-person outdoors when possible, using CWC Zoom accounts and space. Option for materials to be purchased and mailed to remote group participants will be made available. Today, many CWC participants have been impacted by homelessness or housing instability, domestic or dating violence, sexual assault, food insecurity, social isolation, mental illness, substance use disorders, disabilities, and/or other types of trauma. Many group leaders are also members who utilize center services. A number of groups are used as spaces for creative healing, processing, support, and expression. Group participants will submit work for a final in-person/ virtual show/sale.

• Michelle Falcón Fontánez, A Call to Our Ancestors
Grant Award: $4,600.00
A Call to Our Ancestors, is a multimedia series dedicated to honoring the ancestors that came before us. The large photo segment of the project portrays various generations of Puerto Rican/Boricua women, each symbolizing a different element of the culture as well as their roles in society. Those featured are great-grandmother as the protector, grandmother as wisdom, mother as courage, aunt as hope, daughter as consciousness. This women-centered piece recognizes the women in our past and present, whose trajectories are too often forgotten. The photo series will be installed in an outdoor public space accompanied by a community engagement section. Community members will be encouraged to participate by collecting anecdotes, quotes, or items that represent their ancestor and join them with the other ancestral pieces in the designated public space.

• Deborah Lake Fortson, IDA 2021
Grant Award: $4,600.00
IDA 2021 is a public performance art project juxtaposing two eras in our history. Adult and student performers chalk on sidewalks a 1910 text by journalist Ida B. Wells beginning, “With no sacredness of the ballot, there can be no sacredness of human life itself.” This text echoes to us in 2021, proclaiming voting as a sacred right in a democracy, decrying the woe and the violence that can arise when a society tries to prevent voting for part of its population. Three performers chalk, with City permit. A fourth performer wearing 1918 period dress with mask, sits reading a newspaper. A sign invites audience to ask questions. Performers are masked and distanced. During test chalking, people stopped to read, amazed at how contemporary the text sounded and curious to hear about Ida B. Wells' history. Proposed areas: Central Square, Porter Square, and Donnelly Field/East Cambridge.

• Green Cambridge, Our Animal Neighbors
Grant Award: $4,566.00
“Our Animal Neighbors" is a campaign that builds upon our previous year’s multidisciplinary education and access campaign funded by an LCC grant. Each part of this proposed education and access arts campaign centers, through art and performance, the concepts of home, shelter, and interdependence with neighbors. It includes an outdoor April art/citizen science workshop during the Greater Boston City Nature Challenge, a June kamishibai storytelling performance, and an outdoor city nature festival in July, featuring a live caterpillar, printmaking, music, and artmaking. These events were proposed in our 2020 LCC grant but cancelled due to pandemic public health restrictions. We will also produce a multidisciplinary animal video series hosted by a physical theatre performer and members of a high school brass band; more storytelling performances; parades; and two fall STEAM activities.

• Veronica Barron, Sound Shadows album
Grant Award: $3,060.00
We’re recording a 7-track album of our theatrical show, Sound Shadows, which combines shadow puppetry, folk ballads, banjo, and Irish step dance to make visible the technical movements that imbue music with emotion. Our live show uses the visual imagery of dance and shadow theater to help audiences listen with more nuance; our album version uses ambient sounds to accomplish the same, combining the familiar and the novel in a bid to change peoples' perspectives: the squeak of dance shoes, the singer’s breath, the clatter of a teacup, approaching footsteps, conjure the physical space in which our music is made. Thesesounds invite the listener into our intimate creative process, enhancing understanding of what they hear. Sound Shadows is set in a domestic, feminine world—teacups, portraits, a sewing machine, a kitchen table—and aims to reframe this world as nuanced and worthy of attention.

• Cambridge Community Center, The Hop Hop Transformation
Grant Award: $4,600.00
The Hip Hop Transformation (THHT) is a program that teaches urban teens the authentic history of hip hop culture, the role it plays in their lives and in society as a whole, and equips them with the skills and resources to produce, write, record, perform, and distribute their own authentic hip hop music. Program philosophy rests on the idea that there are many ways to deliver 21st Century Skills to young people and that it is our responsibility to deliver these skills in a way that teens are ready to receive. Program culture revolves around authenticity, creativity, leadership, and connection to one another. The youth are held accountable not just by the adults working with them, but also by their collaborating peers to create the best final product possible for the community. Skills received mirror many of the 21st century skills that youth need to prepare themselves for a career.

• Castle of our Skins, Dream-Visions Concert
Grant Award: $4,600.00
"Life is the night with its dream-visions teeming" - Paul Laurence Dunbar's "Over the Hill" poem. Inspired by life's possibilities evoked in Dunbar's poem, “Dream-Visions” is an evening-length concert exploring themes of wonderment and imagination. The program spans time and geography featuring a world premiere chamber piece composed by contemporary African American composer David Sanford, a high energy work by Afro-British contemporary composer Hannah Kendall, and a Neo-Romantic work by 19th century British trailblazer Samuel Coleridge- Taylor. A performance-lecture featuring David Sanford's world premiere will also be given. This event will allow audience members an intimate look into the minds of David and participating performers and an up-close view into the creative music-making process. Both the concert and performance-lecture will be live-streamed and shared broadly.

• Convergence Ensemble, American Voice in Poetry and Song
Grant Amount: $4,140.00
Convergence Ensemble (CE) will be live-streaming its “American Voice in Poetry and Song” concert. Featuring tenor Davron Monroe and former National Slam Poetry Competition winner Regie Gibson, AVPS celebrates the traditional, colloquial, and dynamic facets of the American Voice through poetry, spoken word, and music. We will feature the art songs of Chicago Renaissance composer Florence Price, spirituals, and pieces by Aaron Copland and Samuel Barber. AVPS will also feature the music of Noel Da Costa, a Nigerian-Jamaican composer who passed away in 2002. With Da Costa’s music, CE will continue its “Living History” series, exploring the real-world impact that artists have in their communities. The series involves interviews with people who knew the composer. CE hopes to humanize and educate audiences about the lives of artists, and how artists serve as mentors, friends, and role models.

• Dinosaur Annex Music Ensemble, Storytime with Live Contemporary Music!
Grant Award: $1,000.00
The ensemble proposes Storytime with Live Contemporary Music! integrating children's storytelling in a family-friendly environment with live incidental musical cues written specifically for those stories. Several composers will be commissioned to write new music for specific story- telling sessions; pre-existing music from other composers will be chosen to accompany other stories. The audiences will experience storytelling underscored by a type of music which they might not necessarily encounter in daytime or family-oriented spaces. This project serves as a reprise to our very successful event, Playdate, in Nov. 2019, which featured performances of contemporary classical concert music in a stress-free, judgment-free setting, held at Rock and Roll Day Care. Through newfound focus on the role of narration, the proposed project builds upon our previous work.

• Eureka Ensemble, Rising Tides
Grant Award: $4,600.00
Rising Tides is a new virtual learning program on climate change for youth from Cambridge, Chelsea, and Revere that will occur in the six weeks prior to Earth Day 2021. It will empower youth to reflect upon the impacts of climate change and encourage them, through music and songwriting, to engage with their communities’ efforts to combat it. Rising Tides will feature a weekly after-school seminar with guest speakers from local environmental organizations. It will culminate in a storytelling project in which students collaborate to write lyrics inspired by their experiences of climate change. Eureka will work with a librettist to produce a song with those lyrics that will premiere in late April during the final Rising Tides performance events. Students will be encouraged to attend the virtual performances of climate-related pieces, including renditions of the students’ original songs.

• Alex Lemski, Creative Music Series
Grant Award: $3,013.00
Since 2015 the Creative Music Series (CMS) has produced concerts in Cambridge/Somerville featuring adventurous Jazz/New Music bringing out of town national musicians with creative participation from Boston musicians, recognizing social and cultural realities of women and musicians of color. However, Jazz's cutting-edge visibility has been declining here since the early '90's, so it's an effort to honor musicians who often have never played here to re-vitalize the community. Three concerts will occur, Jon Irabagon’s 5tet, 4/10/21, Golda Solmon 3 (poetry-jazz) + Eliot Cardinaux, poet-pianist 6/19/21, Neil Haversack + Jeff Platz, solo guitarists, 10/9/21, at the Lilypad at this time. Ticket pricing respects the musician's artistic and national reputations. The artists from NY, Mass. and R.I. were invited before the Pandemic’s onset, all Pandemic protocols if needed shall be in effect.

• The Saint John of Damascus Society, Heaven and Earth: A Song of Creation
Grant Amount: $4,600.00
The Saint John of Damascus Society will bring world-renowned vocal ensemble Cappella Romana to St. Paul's Catholic Church in Harvard Square in fall 2021 to perform the program "Heaven and Earth: A Song of Creation." The centerpiece of the program is a collaborative setting of Psalm 103 (LXX numbering), the Psalm of creation, contributed to by six composers who are all active in different repertories of Eastern Orthodox sacred music -- Byzantine psalmody, Russian choral music, Georgian chant, Greek-American choral polyphony, and the developing synthesis of these idioms emerging in Orthodox churches in the American diaspora. The Society commissioned the composers to write "Heaven and Earth" in 2013 specifically for Cappella Romana, which premiered the work in Seattle and Portland in 2018 and will tour and record it in 2021.

• Sarasa Ensemble, Sarasa 2020-21 Virtual Outreach
Grant Amount: $1,840.00
With the future of live concerts still a great unknown at the time of applying for this grant due to COVID-19, Sarasa Ensemble must contemplate creative ways of reaching the more vulnerable members of our audience, the teenagers in detention centers whom we serve in the greater Boston area. Instead of our usual in-person visits, we intend to film each of our five seasonal concert-sets in a special format. In the video, we speak to the camera as if the teenagers are in the room with us. We make sure to introduce ourselves and the instruments we play. We even provide some visual aids such as still images or short videos to add context to the repertoire. The main ingredient is offering a friendly and relaxed experience. We will also provide ideas, such as a rhythm or riff for the type of music the teens enjoy sharing with us.

• Shelter Music Boston, Transformative Classical Music for People Who are Homeless in Cambridge
Grant Award: $4,600.00
Shelter Music Boston (SMB) presents classical chamber music concerts, of the highest artistic standards, in homeless shelters and other sheltering environments. Our goal is to promote community, creative interaction, respect, and therapeutic benefit. We believe all people deserve access to the dignity, creativity, and passion of classical music whether they have a home or not. To that end, SMB’s team of professional musicians perform each month in ensembles of 2-4 players at each of our shelter and recovery center sites. In ordinary times, our concerts are presented live at 8 sites throughout Greater Boston, including Cambridge-based CASPAR Emergency Shelter. As we have transitioned to virtual programming in response to the pandemic, we have added nearly 20 additional “virtual” partners, including Heading Home, The Field House Shelter, and First Church Shelter in Cambridge.

• Cambridgeport School, 3rd Grade Playwriting Residency with Central Square Theater
Grant Award: $4,600.00
For several years, the Cambridgeport School 3rd grade has participated in a playwriting residency at Central Square Theater (previously funded by the STARS grant), to be held this year over Zoom due to the pandemic. Developed to support our science curriculum, this year’s program is based on A River Ran Wild: An Environmental History, which will serve as a mentor text for the creation of a play written by the students. They will study animals and plants in the Charles River to learn about the impact of different events on the River and its organisms spanning the eras. They will then turn this into a play that they create collaboratively over weekly Zoom meetings, led by the staff of the Central Square Theater. After composing the play, students will each portray a character and perform the play, which will be recorded for future viewing (pending signed media releases).

• The Flavor Continues
Grant Award: $4,600.00
This proposed project will provide studio spacing for street and club dancers to choreograph, practice, teach, session, and collaborate for rehearsals, performances, or artistic reasons between January 2021 to June 2021 as a collaboration between The Flavor Continues and Cambridge Community Center for the Arts. It will be diversely used as a place for dancers to teach classes for dance as well as social emotional learning, to practice and keep themselves in shape, as well as to promote their artistic journey by allowing space for collaboration. As the cold sets into Boston, outside will no longer be a viable option for practices. Thus, this space becomes increasingly more important for us to utilize and keep our operations going.

• Ana Masacote, Queer Bodies in Motion
Grant Award: $4,600.00
Many advances in LGBTQ rights have been made in recent years, but anti-LGBTQ legislation and discriminatory practices still exist, which have an adverse effect on the community. “Among a sample of LGBTQ youth of color in Greater Boston, 40 percent reported symptoms of depression/anxiety and 20 percent reported having attempted suicide,” the Equity and Equality Report states. Queer Bodies in Motion (QBM) is an Afro-Latin dance virtual production experience of queer-identified dancers (and select musical artists) from the Cambridge/Boston community. It is set to premiere as a virtual show at Cambridge’s Oberon Theater on May 17, the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. This socially conscious Afro-Latin dance project seeks to draw attention to discrimination faced by the LGBTQ community and the adverse effects it can have on mental health.

• The Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild, Theater Collaboration with Cambridge Public Schools
Grant Award: $1,000.00
The Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild has partnered with Andrea Zuniga, the Director of the Visual and Performing Arts for the Cambridge Public Schools to help provide professional content for the high school and middle school theater students and teachers who have very little outlet this year for their drama activities This online educational content would supplement what teachers are providing in their classes or after school theater groups. If the grant is funded by the local arts council, teachers would be able after January to choose any six of the METG Greenroom (Teacher Professional Development), Spotlight (Student Acting) or Ghostlight (Student Tech) Series created specifically for them. Also, the METG would tailor two separate master classes to the students’ specific needs.

• José Mateo Ballet Theatre, New Dances for Climate Justice
Grant Award: $4,600.00
New Dances for Climate Justice engages three local choreographers of color to create new dances about the intersection of racial justice and climate action. The project will increase engagement of the local arts community and catalyze a more inclusive response to the urgency of climate change and its disproportionate impact on communities of color. The project centers on youth leadership, engagement and advocacy. The works will be presented by three youth groups, OrigiNations, Vidyanjali Dancers of New England and José Mateo Ballet Theatre’s YouthWorks, at the 5th Annual Climate Emergency Meet at The Sanctuary Theatre, May 18-20, 2021. JMBT will collaborate with UMass/Boston’s School for the Environment and Sustainable Solutions Lab and involve the participation of numerous environmental agencies and organizations similarly focused on youth advocacy and climate justice.

• Public Displays of Motion, Stones to Rainbows/Gay to Queer Lives
Grant Award: $4,600.00
We are applying for the final public engagement and performance phase of "Stones to Rainbows/Gay to Queer Lives". The project's first two developmental phases have been in process throughout the pandemic, with participation of LGBTQ+ general public and performing artists including Stonewall-era gays to today's "queer" youth, including a mix of BIPOC, intersectional contributors spanning over 7 decades in age. The elements of this final phase of the project are 1. a multi-media (images, video, audio, projections) sculpture/installation, created using sound and image content from interviews in prior phases, that will emanate from the structure consisting of closet doors and stone bases; and 2. "Queer Cabarets", featuring artist/contributors from early phases plus additional LGBTQ+ performance artists cradled by the installation as a backdrop on 2 evenings at Starlight Square.

• J. Sylvan, Beloved King: A Queer Bible Musical EP Release Concert
Grant Award: $4,600.00
This grant will fund a concert (an outdoor and/or virtual concert unless things are better then) to celebrate the release of a new EP consisting of six songs from Beloved King: A Queer Bible Musical. Beloved King is a full-length musical based on a queer reading of the story of young King David in the Bible. It is my second musical and was my master’s thesis as a Ministerial Fellow at Harvard Divinity School. Due to COVID, this year we’re spending nearly all our resources (including a LAB Grant) hiring an orchestrator to fully arrange the 22 original songs and producing this pro EP which will be released in 2021. The concert will feature five singers and six musicians, plus a conductor, and will intersperse the songs from the EP with context and dialogue from the show. Ideally, this EP release concert will be at Starlight Square, but I have relationships with other venues in Cambridge.

• Belmont World Film, Belmont World Film's Family Festival, Virtual Edition
Grant Award: $1,840.00
The virtual Family Festival gives Cambridge children the opportunity to learn about the lives of children in other countries and gain sensitivity towards people of different cultures. The program includes short and feature length films from around the world and several workshops: clay animation with Aardman's (WALLACE & GROMIT) senior model maker and a 2-day workshop about film criticism by the Boston Society of Film Critics. Highlights: An animated shorts program made by children in Portuguese; ZOG & THE FLYING DOCTORS (based on Julia Donaldson's books); MICROPLASTIC MADNESS (5th graders in Brooklyn create a plastic-free cafeteria); FORWARD (a 10 year old Peruvian starts an innovative recycling program); KUSASA (a South African youth soccer team’s journey to Sweden's Gothia Cup); FAHIM, THE LITTLE CHESS PRINCE (an 8 year-old Bangladeshi refugee becomes France's Under-12 Chess Champion).

• Cambridge Public Schools, Media Arts Studio: Mentor Artist Internship
Grant Award: $4,600.00
The Cambridge Public Schools (CPS) Media Arts Studio (MAS) houses CRLS classes in video and audio production, runs several after school programs, and provides guidance and to all CPS teachers and students. One of our after-school programs provides video production experience to high school students who are paid through the RSTA first-work program. The RSTA first-work program provides funding for worksites that offer jobs to 14-15-year-old youth. In the past they have graciously provided additional support to juniors and seniors to continue to work for us as mentors. They have asked me to find another source of funding as this is generally outside of their mission. We would like to formalize the role of these older students as mentors, including CRLS alumni, and this grant proposal is for funding of two 17-22-year-old students to work for us in the after-school production program.

• Weiying Olivia Huang, The Story of Rodney’s Bookstore
Grant Award: $4,600.00
The Story of Rodney's Bookstore is a documentary film, capturing the history and public memory of Central Square through the lens of one local business. The film reflects the diverse community of Cambridge, from seniors to students, families to faculty, loyal customers to the dedicated staff. These people are also the audience for the film, those who adore art, history, local culture, and films. An important component of the film is its highlighting of the relationship between local businesses and their communities, and how Central Square's past, present, and future is sustained by small businesses just like Rodney’s. We hope that audiences are inspired by the film to support local culture and to appreciate the necessity for local business diversity in every community. The finished film will be open to the public along with a filmmaker Q & A.

• Zhonghe (Elena) Li, The Last Rhino
Grant Award: $4,600.00
On March 20th, 2018, Sudan, the world’s last male northern white rhino, died at 45 at Kenya’s Ol Pejeta Conservancy. Born in South Sudan, the rhino was captured two years after roaming in the wild and brought to the Dvur Králové Zoo in the Czech Republic. He was moved to the Ol Pejeta Conservancy 34 years later. Sudan was survived by his daughter and granddaughter, the only female Northern White Rhinos left on earth. The project is to tell the story of species extinction, biodiversity, and the interconnectivity of all life forms through multi-media presentation, a combination of traditional papercuts, watercolors, poetry, video and digital animation. The project will contain two major parts: (1) to tell the story by the artists, and (2) to give demo/workshops of by collaborating with Cambridge community organizations to reach more diversified groups, and to tell stories together.

• Massachusetts Independent Comics Expo (MICE)
Grant Award: $4,600.00
The Massachusetts Independent Comics Expo (MICE) is an annual community arts festival showcasing comics creators in the Greater Boston area. This free event features a marketplace, educational programming, a mini-grants program, and an annual podcast series. Founded in 2010, MICE is an arts and idea hub for comics creators and community members. The show offers free artist-led workshops for children and adults, encouraging skill-building and learning the mechanics of the art form. MICE also hosts panel discussions examining the theory, craft, and relevance of comics. The annual MICE Mini-Grants program supports the best new work in comics, and the podcast highlights comics culture. Due to the pandemic, MICE 2021 will be a hybrid-model event with a one-day outdoor marketplace (laws permitting) and virtual panels and workshops, as well as an expanded mini-grants program and podcast.

• Nancia Music, I Am Queen
Grant Award: $1,633.00
I Am Queen is a visual arts project highlighting and empowering women. It will film women of various ages and different backgrounds around the city of Cambridge as it highlights their accomplishments, their beauty and power.


Organizational Investment Grants FY2021

Eleven Cambridge organizations have been awarded $99,000 in Organizational Investment Grants by Cambridge Arts and the City of Cambridge. The new funding program provides $9,000 grants to local cultural organizations to support operational costs, sustainability, and resiliency in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

• Aggasiz Baldwin Community
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Agassiz Baldwin Community is in the Agassiz neighborhood of Cambridge, between Harvard and Porter Square. Started informally in the 70s and incorporated in 1985, the Agassiz Baldwin Community is a nonprofit intergenerational community center that nurtures individual growth and creativity, builds connections, and serves as a forum for community advocacy and collaboration. We believe in welcoming and including everyone, lifelong learning, and fostering a culture of creativity and cooperation. In 2010, we reaffirmed our commitment to arts education by renovating the old carriage house in our backyard into a community arts facility, named Maud Morgan Arts Center, which houses a ceramics studio, printmaking studio, 2D classroom, children’s art room, and exhibition space for local artists. Since then, we have offered 130 arts classes per year taught by local artists designed for students of all ages and ability levels. We provide a diverse range of high-quality programs and services for all ages in the Cambridge community, including: a K-5 choice-based and arts-focused afterschool program, a summer camp, year round art classes, a neighborhood council, services for elders, free events, and a community arts gallery. We have adjusted our current offerings to respond to the COVID- 19 crisis, focusing on concrete support to our most vulnerable families, and providing in-person arts-infused childcare for a limited number of high needs children.

• Brattle Film Foundation
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Brattle Film Foundation's (BFF) mission is to celebrate film as a popular and fine art form with cultural and historic importance that excites, educates, & inspires community. Our goal is to provide our community access to a diverse array of films in order to deepen their understanding & appreciation of the medium. The BFF is the nonprofit organization that programs & operates the historic Brattle Theatre in Cambridge, MA, which has been a repertory cinema since 1953. BFF took over the cinema in March 2001 in order to preserve its repertory programming model — where films are programmed on a calendar instead of open-ended runs — so that future generations would have access to the programming style that earned The Brattle its moniker of “Boston’s Unofficial Film School.” We provide year-round film programming that includes curated film series & multiple-day engagements for film premieres & reissues. As the premier destination for repertory cinema in New England, the BFF uses an international view of cinema to:
- Ensure cinema is respected, viewed, & recognized alongside other great works of art.
- Enrich the cinema experience through diverse film programming, education, & access to film artists and academics.
- Show a diverse range of films that cannot & will not be shown anywhere else;
- Ensure cinema is respected, viewed, & recognized alongside other great works of art; and,
- Enrich the cinema experience through diverse film programming, education.

• Cambridge Art Association
Grant Award: $9,000.00
It is the mission of the Cambridge Art Association (CAA) to build a vibrant community through visual art: connecting individuals and facilitating dialogue among artists and art lovers of all ages and backgrounds. To accomplish this, CAA exhibits quality works of art and seeks to enrich lives and engage art enthusiasts and collectors. CAA also provides educational opportunities to its members and others to enhance their skills as artists and promote the appreciation of visual art. The Cambridge Art Association was founded in 1944 by a group of local artists and art supporters. At the time, there was no other local association like it. The CAA was a space for exhibiting work, learning new techniques, and socializing. It was – and is – above all, a community of artists. Today, the CAA currently maintains two gallery spaces for exhibits, as well as several less traditional satellite spaces. Until August 2015, we were a juried members association. As the result of a strategic plan and long-term vision for the CAA, we are now open to all. We present roughly 25 gallery exhibits, and an additional 20 exhibits in our satellite spaces. We create opportunities for local and regional contemporary artists to engage with gallery owners, curators, collectors, and each other through networking events, portfolios reviews, and other professional development programs. We are in West Cambridge, MA, and primarily serve New England-based visual artists.

• Cambridge Children’s Chorus
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The mission of Boston City Singers and its Cambridge Children’s Chorus division is to provide the highest level of musical training and wide-ranging performance opportunities to young people ages 4-12, inspiring personal development, celebrating diversity and fostering goodwill. Our vision is to transform the lives of young people one voice at a time, inspiring and developing each heart to live with compassion in a world of differences. Wendy Silverberg, a lifelong Cantabrigian and seasoned Cambridge Public School music educator, taught popular classes for young children in Boston City Singers’ Jamaica Plain and Dorchester divisions. Cantibrigians learned of these classes and felt that their own children would benefit from similar programs in their own neighborhood. With the support of former students and neighbors, our Cambridge Children’s Chorus division was founded in 2012 by Wendy in collaboration with Jane Money, Founding Artistic Director of Boston City Singers. Eighty percent of Cambridge Children’s Chorus members live in Cambridge. The remainder live in Arlington, Somerville, Belmont and Watertown. We anticipate that programming will resume at St. John the Evangelist Church in North Cambridge once the lockdown is lifted and it is safe to sing together. Until that time, our programs remain virtual.

• Central Square Theater
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Central Square Theater (CST) was created collaboratively 15 years ago by Underground Railway and The Nora Theaters. With a combined history of 50 years of work, CST engages over 35,000 people annually through live performance, rigorous youth education, and community programs. CST works closely with MIT on Catalyst Collaborative@MIT, one of the only nationwide partnerships between a world class research institute and a local theater. CST is also home, fiscal sponsor and provides mentorship, technical support, and space to The Front Porch Arts Collective (The Porch): the only professional theater/education company of black and brown theater artists, committed to advancing racial equity in Greater Boston. Central Square Theater is the only female led theater organization in the Greater Boston area under the leadership of Executive Director Catherine Carr Kelly, Artistic Director Debra Wise, and Artistic Director Lee Mikeska Gardner. The CST full time and part-time core staff is 35% BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color). Pre-COVID, CST employed up to 150 artists, educators, and front-of-house staff throughout the year. The CST board is 40% people of color and we are aggressively rebalancing by gender and age. CST has long been committed to social justice and equity and inclusion. At CST, Art is our Activism. Our responsibility as artists and activists is to create theater where points of view are heard, perspective shifts, and change can happen.

• The Dance Complex
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Dance Complex (The DC) located at the heart of Central Square is a unique and leading center for study, creation, and performance of multiple genres and cultural forms of dance. We believe that everyone should be afforded the benefits of movement in their lives as a tool for personal fulfillment and growth, serving professional and recreational dancers alike. Over 1500 community members, diverse in age, race, and socio-economic background come to study dozens of dance genres and forms from the world over and partake in workshops or engage in performances each week. A 60+ teaching artist roster shares classes and workshops weekly; 300+ choreographers develop new dances monthly. Programming is robust, with free and greatly discounted access to dance through multiple annual festivals and community engagement that frames dance as a catalyst of individual and community growth. To support the professional dance field locally, we offer hundreds of free hours of studio use and production support, as well as artistic and arts administration mentoring in professional development programs. In this unique moment in time, we are building upon recent foundation support, encouraging reflection and evolution through theory of change processes. Even through COVID and its obvious financial challenges, we are committing to organization wide learning, dialogue and action regarding equity and access for all but especially for our BIPOC, Queer, and Disabilities communities.

• Global Arts Live (formerly “World Music”)
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Based in Cambridge for 30 years, Global Arts Live is a nonprofit organization with the mission to bring the best international music, contemporary dance, and jazz from around the world to stages across Greater Boston. By putting the spotlight on artists from all corners of the globe and reflecting the diverse and vibrant community that is Cambridge, we aspire to transcend borders, cultivate community, and enrich lives. Global Arts Live has made live, international music and dance a vital part of Cambridge’s cultural scene by featuring more than 800 artists from 70+ countries in over 1,500 performances attended by more than 1 mil people. Launched as World Music in 1990 in Cambridge, we are based in Central Sq. and have grown to be the foremost New England presenter of music and dance from all corners of the globe. While our hunger for music and dance has not changed since our founding, the term world music no longer reflected our expansive multidisciplinary programming that represents our artistic mission. In May 2019, we changed our name to Global Arts Live. By putting the spotlight on what we value most—the transformative power of live performance to enrich and shape our lives—we believe our new name reflects our place in today’s global world.

• Innovators for Purpose
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Innovators for Purpose is a Cambridge-based nonprofit that inspires high-potential diverse young people, especially those from untapped populations (people of color, girls, children from first generation immigrants and low-income families), to discover their passions, develop innovative mindsets and acquire marketable skills. Using a hands-on multidisciplinary approach that integrates art, design, and humanities with STEM, we have reimagined how to engage today’s learners. In collaboration with mentors, students work on real projects learning how to navigate ambiguity, communicate across disciplines and create unique solutions that delight clients and end-users. Through our learning experiences, iFp unlocks young people's potential empowering them to drive their own communities forward. Founded in March 2014, iFp instituted its first program at Fletcher Maynard Academy located in Cambridge’s most economically challenged area. Using iFp’s design process, students examined the question “How Might We be Part of a Changing Neighborhood?” Since then, our programming has empowered students to move beyond asking that question to actively participating in the change. Over the past 6.5 years we have worked with over 300 hundred students and 50+ collaborators. We invest deeply in building long-term relationships with students and their families to ensure access to opportunity, networks, resources and supports necessary to change student lives.

• The Loop Lab
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Loop Lab is a Cambridge-based nonprofit dedicated to empowering Womxn and People of Color in the media arts to develop careers in audio/video through job training. Co-founders Christopher Hope and Moise Michel began The Loop Lab using the design method to assess the socioeconomic needs of young adults of color in the Port Neighborhood. From this needs assessment two themes emerged, the desire to be creative and for increased economic opportunities. Using community feedback, The Loop Lab was established to create an intersection between creativity and jobs training. The Loop Lab provides students with a 19- week media arts workforce training program, during which students receive a stipend. Post- training, the students are placed in paid internships to help gain working experience in media. The Loop Lab also offers production services to local businesses and these services both allow for students to gain hands-on experiences and help to sustain operational costs. As part of the creative arts community in Central Square and the Cambridge Arts Reopening Advisory Committee, we now serve throughout the City of Cambridge beyond the Port Neighborhood. The Loop Lab operates out of Cambridge and enrolls students who are living in Cambridge, or Greater Boston. Demographically, students are mostly Black and Latinx ages 18-26. Students have graduated high school or GED, but are not attending a post-secondary college, and are interested in working in the professional media art field.

• Multicultural Arts Center
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Multicultural Art Center is a non-profit corporation founded in 1978 as an arts center focused on helping diverse populations better understand one another. In 1985 we moved into our home at 41 Second Street in East Cambridge. Since our founding, we have worked to bring the arts to the people of Cambridge, to provide opportunities for artists of diverse backgrounds, particularly artists of color, and to be a standard-bearer of the arts in our community. Our mission is to present multicultural visual and performing arts programs to educate the community about diversity, and to make our facility available to artists or groups that might not otherwise have access to a professionally equipped facility or the cultural mainstream.

• Studio at 550
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Studio@550 is an artist exchange center designed to promote cross disciplinary exchange through classes, workshops, professional development events, networking events, performances, and opportunities through programming and space rental. Opening our doors in 2016, we strived to provide a space (physically and artistically) for multiple disciplines to cross paths with one another. A space where inter and cross disciplinary practices could be formed and cultivated. Over the last 4 years our mission grew, but our vision stayed its course. Studio at 550 has grown to be a resource in the arts communities not just for the physical space, but also for resources, opportunities, and programs it has spearheaded and supported.

Port Neighborhood Grants FY2021

Ten new arts projects are coming to Cambridge’s Port neighborhood with $90,000 in funding from Cambridge Arts and the City of Cambridge’s Port Neighborhood Grants. The winning projects range from a mural celebrating scientists of color and a teen film festival to hip hop performances and free tap dance classes. Each cultural project is funded at $9,000 from Percent-for-Art funding tied to the city’s Port Infrastructure Project, which is a multi-year construction project to reduce flooding in the Port Neighborhood.

• ART±BIO Collaborative, ART±BIO Science Mural
Grant Award: $9,000.00
We are proposing the creation of a large-scale ART±BIO Science Mural, created in collaboration with Port-area youth, and educators, mentored by BIPOC Artists and Scientists, and located on a highly visible public wall in a targeted area. The mural will highlight the scientific discoveries, research, and study organisms of a Scientist of Color, will feature engaging, dynamic nature- based imagery, teach a simple biological concept to engage the Port community in science learning, and will promote equity through Representation. The Science Mural will include a brief statement, scientific concept, or key word to educate and inform viewers about the featured BIPOC scientist, artists, and the scientific research behind the imagery. The combination of artistic, culturally relevant, and imaginative nature-based imagery with scientific content will not only teach, but also foster in the Port neighborhood an appreciation for, and sense of pride and interest in the scientific progress happening in our midst by People of Color. Creating, looking at, learning from, and interacting with an ART±BIO Science Mural will inherently connect viewers with nature and positively shape public opinion about WHO can do science and art.

• Cambridge Hip Hop Collective, The Bridgeside Cypher
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Bridgeside Cypher is an outdoor event hosted in the Port Neighborhood in Cambridge. We define a cypher as a gathering of artists taking turns rapping in a circle. It is a platform for artists to come together and collaborate in an open, informal, often improvised format. This allows a safe space for people who have never performed in public to rap or sing without the fear of being judged. The energy of the cypher is always supportive and respectful, so it allows up-and- coming artists to practice and build confidence, while performing in front of a large group of people. Hip-hop is famous for elevating the voices of typically oppressed and underrepresented communities and the Bridgeside Cypher is a great representation of that. The intent of the Cypher is to build bridges between people of all different backgrounds by bringing them together in a uniquely exciting and expressive environment. Our cyphers are three hours long and have three sections. A freestyle circle, a music video shoot, and a featured performance. The video shoot allows aspiring artists to have a professional cypher video recorded and edited for free and will create a lasting piece of art that represents The Port.

• Cambridge Public Health Department, Arts for Health: Call for Artists
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Cambridge Public Health Department (CPHD) oversees the City of Cambridge’s public health agenda, codified in a five-year Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP), supported by the Massachusetts Community Health and Healthy Aging fund. The Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) is helping CPHD enhance community engagement through the CHIP’s five-year lifecycle. Our proposal is a call for artists to submit proposals for arts interventions in the media of their choice. Proposals should engage the community around one or more of the CHIP priority areas - Mental Health, Healthy Eating and Active Living, and Community and Social Resilience – emphasizing health equity and racism, the CHIP’s cross-cutting theme. Proposed projects should offer creative, safe, accessible and culturally inclusive opportunities for engagement. The positive impact of arts on community health is well documented and aligns with CHIP priority areas. In this project, artists engage residents in dialogue about health and connect residents' lived experiences to the CHIP. Arts-infused engagement approaches are especially useful during the COVID19 pandemic when traditional community engagement techniques are impossible and offer a way to support local artists.

• Community Art Center, Inc., Support of Do It Your Damn Self!! Film Festival
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Founded in 1996 by six Cambridge teens (all people of color from the Port) who felt misrepresented in the media and wanted to change it, the festival is a champion of social-justice and issue-focused youth filmmakers who want to make it happen. Now the longest running youth led film festival in the country, "Do It Your Damn Self!!" draws over 800 visitors/viewers every year. Films are chosen by the teen producers of the festival from a pool of submissions from teens throughout the country. DIYDS!! films address issues including gender, race, and class identity, and are often, poignant, funny, and very brave. In 2020, DIYDS!! was held virtually for the first time and will be virtual again in 2021. We embrace the opportunity to expand our audience through utilizing on-line platforms for 2021 and are working towards a hybrid model of on-line and live festivals for the future. This grant will help DIYDS!! to further elevate the accessibility of DIYDS!! to Port residents, while heightening visibility of the rich culture of the Port in our marketing by updating the DIYDS!! website to include translation into Haitian-Creole and Spanish, as well as developing systems for providing closed or open captioning to DIYDS!! films.

• Tory Fair, Portable Window
Grant Award: $9,000.00
My sculpture, Portable Window, gives agency to explore how we frame ourselves in relationship to each other and to our surroundings at large. The sculpture is essentially a wood wheel with handles and a rectangular window in the center that frames a view. While our digital culture has made it incredibly easy to frame and take pictures without restraint, Portable Window slows down and makes framing our surroundings a more physical act in sync with our bodies. Generating conversations, happenings, and videos from rolling Portable Window (a phone easily clicks into the sculpture to record video) opens several platforms to listen and learn in an unprecedented time of pandemic anxiety and cultural upheaval. I propose to roll the sculpture with the community to create an archive of videos and images that represent a unique portrait of The Port. This interaction can be done safely under COVID guidelines. Throughout the grant year, Port residents and community will co-create with a Portable Window Kit, a small 2-foot sculpture, that is easily assembled and rolled by individuals. These rolls will generate a larger archive of videos and conversations that represent a 2021 portrait of The Port, framed by the residents.

• David Fichter, Moses Youth Center Mosaics
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The concept of Moses Mosaics is a continuation of a mosaic project designed by the artist and fabricated by youth, staff and community volunteers for the front entrance of the Robert and Janet Moses Youth Center in 2019-2020, funded by Cambridge Arts through a FLOW grant. This bright and colorful mosaic frieze is located on 16-inch X 40 ft. panels, 10 ft. off the ground. At the backside of the building there is rear entrance, which overlooks Sennott Park and the basketball courts located there. It has matching concrete panels above the rear entrance, which is 16 inches X 16 ft. The concept of this proposal is for the artist to work with students, staff, and community volunteers to create matching mosaics for the second site on the outside of the youth center. In addition to high visibility by the public using Sennott Park, the new mosaic will enhance the building aesthetics by visually linking the front and back entrances. The artist will consult with students and staff about imagery for the mosaic and conduct a series of 8 workshops over a two-month period to fabricate the mosaic. The imagery of the mosaics will be like the front, depicting students engaged in activities that take place in and around the youth center.

• Elon Fyfield, The Black Matters Performance Series
Grant Award: $9,000.00
I developed Black Matters in June 2020 in light of my own experiences facing adversity as a Black man with a Master's degree in Educational Leadership and a lifelong passion for creating music under the name Lizzle4 (Lizzle is an ode to my name Elon and 4 is an ode to the Port). As a professional recording artist born and raised in the Port who has produced two full length albums, countless music videos and performed locally, nationally and internationally, I created the Black Matters movement to celebrate Black identity, Black communities, Black artists, and Black businesses. The Black Matters performance series will host Port-based BlPOC artists and those that support the mission of Black Matters (rappers, singers, poets, dancers, spoken word performers, videographers, and so much more) through monthly open air performances in locations throughout the Port neighborhood as a free offering to my community. In preparation for the series, we will film a short documentary that highlights Black Matters, the work of artists involved and their process, as well as words of inspiration and hope. The Black Matters short film will be screened throughout the performance series as a unifying thread.

• Green City Growers, Intersecting Art and Urban Gardening at the Moses Youth Center
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Green City Growers (GCG), in collaboration with the Moses Youth Center, is excited to propose our innovative approach to integrating art with urban gardening in the Port Neighborhood. We propose continuing our existing hands-on gardening program at the Center while expanding to include additional arts/gardening activities developed to foster a sense of connection and excitement around art and growing food for oneself and one’s community. GCG will provide garden arts curriculum with instructions and materials for all projects and activities. The program curriculum will provide two years of activities and materials for the Center. As a part of curriculum, staff will be provided a framework to use to engage youth in identifying a problem they are interested in taking action to address through gardening and arts. Areas of interest for youth include access to healthy fresh food, beautification of the neighborhood, creation of personal and public artwork, use of natural materials to create art, social justice and equity, and the effects of agricultural practices on the environment and climate change. The program will focus on equipping youth to make a positive difference in their community through gardening and arts.

• Jenny Herzog, Tap for Joy
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Tap for Joy was developed during Covid-19, in order to offer free, outdoor, socially distanced tap dance classes for dancers of all ages and skill levels. The increased isolation and alienation experienced collectively during Covid inspired me to pilot this program, to bring people together--in person! --to make music. The fundamental philosophy of Tap for Joy is it's hard to be unhappy while you're tap dancing. As a professional tap dancer who has dealt with my own mental health challenges, I have realized that anxiety and depression begin to melt away when I am tap dancing. It is an inherently joyful art form, inviting you to step into the music and the present moment. I want to share this experience as far and wide as I can--especially now, as we could all use a lot more joy! This partnership will offer free Tap for Joy classes to K-12 students at Prospect Hill Academy. Students will cultivate their tap-dancing ability, dance with live music, and put on a final performance for their families and friends. Tap for Joy will provide students with an opportunity to momentarily forget the worries of Covid-19, experience a uniquely American art form, create music with their feet, and share the joy.

• Anna Myer and Dancers, Closing the Divide
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The purpose of the project is to give Cambridge audiences multi-layered, constructive experiences that connect to the deeper, emotional aspects of racism to help them connect in positive, unifying ways. With COVID-19 in mind, our project has five elements. They are:
1) To complete the edit of a documentary film that features beheard.world dancers and poets who took on racism during a three-week tour from the Deep South to Chicago, having talkbacks with audiences and little-known Civil rights leaders. The film reveals how it affected their identity and courage to become artist activists in inspirational ways.
2) To broadcast the film on CCTV with our artists leading a talkback.
3) To show a short, beheard.world film called “Together—Six Feet Apart” on the exterior of The Dance Complex as part of its summer public arts series.
4) To show 30 enlarged and laminated postcards from random area citizens who share their greatest hopes and fears for equity. In the process they will be decorated by local high school art students to enhance the messages.
5) To show “Together—Six Feet Apart” on a portable screen on the basketball court in Clement Morgan Park that we would convert to an outdoor theater with social distancing.