Keep Moving and Innovating - 10 Questions with Michelle and Kevin Calloway of Space 42
Located at 2670 Phyllis Street is Space 42. A former industrial warehouse, this 22,000 square foot building now serves the community as a place where art, technology, and creative entrepreneurship converge. The ambitious team behind Space 42, which includes wife and husband duo Michelle and Kevin Calloway, are building upon multi-faceted aspirations to plant a beacon in the ground near the corner of Roselle and King in an effort to proudly transmit to the surrounding world that cool things exist there. And, in even larger terms, that cool things exist in Jacksonville, Florida.
It takes courage, foresight, imagination, and a healthy tolerance for risk to take on a project as substantial as converting a structure the size of Space 42. Truth be told, it's the type of conversion that pipe dreams are made of but few individuals actually have the vision and access to resources that allow them to pursue. That said, those involved with Space 42 are proving what is possible with the right plan of attack and the right team of associates leading the charge. Through it all, however, the team also acknowledges that there is a learning curve for this type of transformative initiative and it requires one to be adaptive, willing to admit what they don't know, and also okay with learning from trial and error.
The Empowerment People Feel When They Are Included - 10 Questions with Kate and Kenny Rouh of RouxArt
The City of Jacksonville, through its Art in Public Places Program as administered by the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville, maintains a permanent public collection of more than 115 artworks and memorials throughout Duval County. For those who may not be familiar with the term "public art," public art refers to art in any media, including murals, sculpture, memorials, integrated or landscaped architectural work, photography, digital media, and mosaics, that has been planned and executed with the intention of being staged in the physical public domain. Public art is most impactful when it is site-specific, meaning it has been designed in response to the place and community in which it resides. It can be a powerful tool to communicate the history of a place, its people, and even address social or environmental issues. Because it is public, the art is free and accessible to everyone.
Of the City's collection, no piece may be more iconic than "Mirrored River: Where Do You See Yourself." Created in 2015 along Jacksonville's Southbank, "Mirrored River" is a tile, mirror, and pebble mosaic of the St. Johns River. For an especially enchanting experience, view the artwork at sunset to be engulfed in a combination of soothing colors as both the skyline, river, and surrounding blue lights reflect off the mirrors and enhance the blue and green tiles that create the artwork. Examine the piece with a closer eye and hidden within it you will find five quotes about the St. Johns River.
"Mirrored River" was designed by Kate and Kenny Rouh, who are also known as RouxArt. This wife and husband duo have made a name for themselves by creating works that are accessible to the public and accentuate Jacksonville's visual landscape. What makes their projects even more impactful is that they always invite residents and visitors of Jacksonville to participate in the creative process. When creating "Mirrored River," during a span of 42 days, more than 70 community members participated in creating the mosaic that is 64 feet in length and 7 feet in height.
Art is a Spiritual Practice - 10 Questions with Filipino American Visual and Performing Artist Grace Bio
Grace Bio is an Filipino American illustrator, graphic designer, mixed media artist, and performing artist. Born in Key West, Florida, she was raised in a Navy family and traveled extensively until she and her family settled in Jacksonville in 1991. After graduating high school, Bio spent time attending Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ) and Flagler College.
Since 2006, Bio has performed and exhibited her visual art throughout the United Sates. Starting in 2012 and continuing for nearly four years, Bio served as the Art Director for Education Through Entertainment and Art Partnerships, a Jacksonville based education company that provides students with educational instruction through project-based music and film production, technology training, and language arts. By making use of a curriculum rooted in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics), students are taught to develop the social, critical, and technological abilities that are required for collaborative and innovative progress. Her work as a graphic designer was featured in a series of educational children's books which have been utilized by educators nationwide.
Bio's work has a strong, visual signature of urban culture, while also being poetic and evocative. Through her work, she brings awareness to the modern world while also paying tribute to the people and traditions of yesteryear. In 2018, Bio had work on exhibit as part of "Living History: A Cultural Mosaic" and "Writing On the Walls," both exhibits at the Jacksonville Public Library's Jax Makerspace Gallery.
What Do You Think Of When You Think Of Community, And What's One Thing That You Can Do To Build A Better Community?
During Public Art Week 2018 - Building a Better Community, we went out into communities and asked two specific questions:
What do you think about when you think of community?
What's one thing that you can do to build a better community?
We compiled some of the answers into the following videos.
Public Art Week (PAW) is an annual, week-long initiative that celebrates Jacksonville’s public art and highlights the benefits that are created when investments are made in art that is accessible by all. It is led by the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville to encourage residents and visitors to explore and engage with works of art that comprise Jacksonville’s rapidly developing artistic and creative landscape. In addition to advancing the community’s awareness of, and engagement with, the City of Jacksonville’s official public art collection, PAW also showcases public art initiatives led by private entities and individuals.
PAW supports the Cultural Council’s role of ensuring broad accessibility and public engagement with the arts culturally, socially, educationally, and economically. It also supports the Cultural Council’s role of advocating for public and private financial support for Jacksonville’s arts and cultural sector.
This year PAW was presented by JEA and the theme was Building a Better Community. We partnered with 25 different organizations to present programming throughout Jacksonville's diverse neighborhoods. Our partners included:
10 Questions with Visual Artist, Art Educator, and Director of Art in Public Places, Christie Thompson Holechek
Christie Thompson Holechek is a third-generation native to Jacksonville. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Painting and Drawing from the University of North Florida (UNF) and a Master of Fine Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studio and Theory from Portland, Maine's Maine College of Art.
For the past 18 years, Holechek has served Jacksonville in leadership positions including arts administration, secondary education, and youth arts programming with a mission to make arts and culture accessible to all. Since 2010, she has held the position of Director of Art in Public Places (APP), the City of Jacksonville's Percent for Art program that is administered by the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville. Holechek is also an adjunct professor in 2-D Design and Drawing at her alma mater, UNF, and maintains an active studio practice.
Questions? Comments? Submit something for consideration?
Please email ellen@CulturalCouncil.org