New Bedford Creative facilitates two grant programs:
Art is Everywhere, a grant program that intends to help advance New Bedford as one of the most culturally unique and creative cities in America. This grant is funded by MassDevelopment’s Transformative Development Initiative (TDI) and the Barr Foundation, and is one component of a broader “TDI Creative Cities” initiative to boost arts-based economic development.
Wicked Cool Places, a grant program for making or keeping a place where things are happening and people want to be that involve and impact residents, visitors and/or businesses in New Bedford’s neighborhoods. This grant is funded by the City of New Bedford’s Arts, Culture and Tourism Fund, with additional support by Bristol County Savings Bank.
2022 Art is Everywhere Grant Guidelines
The Art is Everywhere grant program advances New Bedford, Massachusetts as one of the most culturally unique and creative cities in America. The 2022 grant program criteria prioritizes inspiring and creative ideas that directly address a current challenge facing residents, visitors, and/or businesses in New Bedford’s neighborhoods, such as arts and culture based solutions that expedite recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic; support the advancement of diversity, equity, inclusion, and access (DEIA) in all forms; or strengthen the creative network throughout the city. In all cases, projects that focus on DEIA outcomes will be prioritized.
Grant awards between $1,000 and $20,000 will be invested in projects from smaller scalable ideas to larger big ideas. Individuals, non-profits, community groups, and for-profits are all eligible to apply. This grant’s cash award can be used for: material and direct project costs, operational expenses, including labor/staff time, capital improvements, sub-contractors, vendors, or third party assistance.
In addition to the cash award, the selected projects will also be offered the following:
• A one year part-time membership for one team member to the Co-Creative Center (value $600)
• The opportunity to participate in professional development training through organizations such as Co-Creative Center, New Bedford Creative, New Bedford Economic Development Council (NBEDC), SouthCoast Community Foundation, and others
Facilitated by New Bedford Creative, housed at the New Bedford Economic Development Council, and funded by MassDevelopment/TDI and the Barr Foundation, this grant is one component of a broader “TDI Creative Cities” initiative to boost arts-based economic development.
March 28, 2022: Grant application available at newbedfordcreative.org/grant-programs
April 5, 2:00-3:00pm: Information Session (translation available in Spanish or Portuguese)
April 6-30: Information Session recording available on YouTube
April 12, 19, 26, 12:00-2:00pm: Online office hours*, email email@example.com
May 2, 11:59pm: Deadline to submit application
June 9-10: Public announcement of grants
June 13: Grant awardees – work underway
July TBD: Grant awardees – webinar on how to complete reports
September 1: Grant awardees – first report due
June 13, 2023: Grant awardees – final report due (or 1 month after completion of project)
*If these hours do not work, email Margo Saulnier with other options at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Individuals, organizations, and project teams of nonprofit and/or for-profit status proposing projects in or for the City of New Bedford are eligible to apply for an Art is Everywhere Grant. This includes creative leaders, emerging artists, cultural assets, institutions, businesses, engaged community members, inclusive funders, and supportive programming teams. Diverse and inclusive project teams are encouraged to apply.
The 2022 grant program criteria prioritizes inspiring and creative ideas that directly address a current challenge facing residents, visitors, and/or businesses in New Bedford’s neighborhoods, such as arts and culture based solutions that expedite recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic; support the advancement of diversity, equity, inclusion, and access (DEIA) in all forms; or strengthen the creative network throughout the city. In all cases, projects that focus on DEIA outcomes will be prioritized.
There is a wide range of challenges that projects may address with this grant program, including but not limited to:
• Advancing the physical or mental well-being of a community, neighborhood, or group of people
• Highlighting underappreciated cultural or historic communities, issues, or infrastructure
• Supporting the COVID-19 vaccination, or improving public health in general
• Bringing exposure and interest to small businesses and cultural institutions through reopening
• Assisting with unemployment, job recovery, workforce training, or leadership development
• Facilitating public education, youth development, early childhood intervention, child care
• Addressing affordable housing, homelessness, rent stabilization, rent eviction
• Improving public transportation, or access to safe pedestrian and bicycle transport
• Advancing solutions to hunger, food insecurity, access to nutrition
• Providing resources to empower a specific group, such as veterans, the elderly, immigrants, etc.
• Dealing with the technological divide and digital access
• Connecting people in the community that may not otherwise interact
• Developing programs for climate change, environmental, and community resiliency
Successful applications will meet the following criteria to be awarded an Art is Everywhere Grant:
- Narrative (10 points): How well does the project use an arts, creativity, or culture-based approach to directly impact one or more current challenges in or for the City of New Bedford?
- Community benefit (10 points): How well does the project benefit the community, and are the specific participants or intended audience(s) clearly identified, such as: youth and/or elderly residents; Black, Indigenous, and people of color; LGBTQ+; people with disabilities; immigrants, English as a second language, armed service veterans, etc.?
- Partnership (5 points): How well does the project include partnerships and collaborations? Does the project include at least one partnership, with at least one member of the project team based in the City of New Bedford?
- Planning and Timeline (3 points): Is the planning sufficient and the timeline make sense to ensure quality in implementation, including property owner permission and/or permits? (Letter of support from any property owner(s) and/or a list of all required permitting.)
- Budget (2 points): Is the budget clear and reasonable? Is the overall project feasible within the suggested budget?
GRANT SELECTION COMMITTEE
All applications will be reviewed by a selection committee composed of representatives of the New Bedford community, along with MassDevelopment partners.
- Stephanie Harrington Sloan, assistant director, New Bedford Health Department
- Sidney A. Murray II, board member, Southeastern MA Chapter, American Red Cross
- Denise Porché, executive director, Island Foundation
- Ceuma Rosa, vaccine outreach coordinator, Immigrants Assistance Center
- Karyl Ryan, president GNB Cares, program director, Coastline Elderly Services, owner of Baskets of Grace
- Representative from MassDevelopment
GRANT TERMS AND CONDITIONS
• Project applicants will be required to sign a grant agreement in order to receive grant funds
• Project applicants will be required to provide data about the project at key project milestones to be detailed within project specific grant agreements and as requested by MassDevelopment
• All projects must be ready to begin planning within four (4) weeks and complete within one year of receiving the grant award notification
In December of 2018, New Bedford completed the city’s first ever strategic arts and culture plan entitled New Bedford Creative: Our Art, Our Culture, Our Future. This plan, which followed decades of critical planning and was undertaken with essential community financial support and extensive community input, outlines nine major cultural strategies to advance the role of arts + culture in the city.
In January of 2019, the New Bedford Creative Consortium was formed through a community nominating process to lead and oversee the execution of the Arts and Culture Plan. This volunteer group is facilitated by the Creative Strategist with additional staff support from the NBEDC and City Departments of Planning, Tourism, Parks Recreation and Beaches, and the Mayor’s Office.
During this same time period, MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, was formulating a new program for cities, like New Bedford, that were completing the Transformative Development Initiative (TDI), a program for Gateway Cities designed to accelerate economic growth within focused districts. In 2019-2020, MassDevelopment TDI selected New Bedford to be the first design pilot for their new “TDI Creative Cities” initiative, funded by the Barr Foundation. This new program is designed to come at the end of the main TDI program and serve as an accelerator for districts that want to focus intensively on the creative economy.
For 2020-2022, the roll out of the program for New Bedford focuses on providing financial and technical support to expedite many aspects of the nine cultural strategies outlined in the arts and culture plan New Bedford Creative. The goal remains to boost the role of arts, culture, and creativity as a key driver in the continued development of the New Bedford economy, and shaping a city where “art is everywhere, encouraging fun, provoking thought, and nurturing the soul.”
History of Art is Everywhere:
2021: “ART IS EVERYWHERE” PROJECTS CHART A COURSE FORWARD
NEW BEDFORD, MA — “Each proposal had a unique take on how art can inspire new connections and rekindle old ones,” says Takeru Nagayoshi, member of the Review Committee for the 2021 “Art is Everywhere” special grant program — and 2020 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year, from New Bedford High School. “In a year where we lost so much in our communities, I felt hope for how art can bring us back together.”Indeed, “Art is Everywhere” in this city — and it’s being mobilized to creatively meet community needs and confront head-on the lingering after-effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. Last year, one project, “Your New Bedford” from 3rd EyE Youth Empowerment, tackled the challenge. This year, six special projects have been awarded a total of $64,000 to help meet those goals.
“In launching TDI Creative Cities in a year that was so challenging for communities like New Bedford, we prioritized the idea that the city’s most creative leaders should be empowered with financial assistance so they can use their craft to help solve broader community issues,” says Noah Koretz, MassDevelopment Director of Transformative Development. “I’m thrilled to see such a major cross-section of the community participating in this process, and I am happy that this year’s ‘Art is Everywhere’ funding will support projects that reflect both the city’s history and its future.”
ABOUT THE 2021 ART IS EVERYWHERE GRANT RECIPIENTS
“Highlighting Diverse Stories: New Bedford’s Middle Schoolers as Literacy Ambassadors,” $2,500: Diversity in news matters. That’s why Emma York, a local educator, and Sawyer Pollitt, founder of New Bedford media outlet The Scallop, are bringing students directly into the reporting process. Together, they will lead students at Our Sisters’ School in writing a monthly column spotlighting middle grade books whose protagonists, authors and themes reflect New Bedford’s diversity. They hope this project serves as a model for collaboration between other schools and media outlets, giving young people from low-income backgrounds the chance to shape the narratives surrounding themselves and their communities.
New Bedford Children: Creative Resource Center, $12,000: The vision for The Creative Resource Center is to explore new and innovative ideas and materials for use in early childhood classrooms. Located within the Kilburn Mill community, this project works to bring together local artists and early childhood educators in an inspiring and supportive environment filled with materials brimming with creative potential. These open-ended items range widely from traditional art supplies to unusual materials collected from local businesses for reuse. All materials are thoughtfully curated to provoke creativity. This treasure trove of creative expression will be open to early educators to support their teaching as well as to the public. The center will also host free bi-weekly educator workshops open to educators from the more than 35 early childhood centers (including family child care providers) in New Bedford. This center acts as a central hub for the nonprofit’s mission to ensure every child’s right to a high-quality early childhood education in New Bedford by hosting a common space that nurtures everyone’s innate need to play, create, share and learn.
“Pandemic Renaissance – The Art of Surviving C 19,” $20,000: will serve as a historic archive of the pandemic for generations to come. Through artistic lenses of art, dance, music and poetry captured, a documentary film team led by award winning Cape Verdean artists Iva Brito and a’Ali DeSousa, will share stories of The Whaling City. “Pandemic Renaissance – The Art of Surviving C 19” will address this by documenting how multicultural communities have persevered and humanity has come shining through.
“Pride Month: Kaleidoscope – Art Through Your Eyes,” $2,500: This project is actually two projects in one. The first is an LGBTQ+ art show entitled “Kaleidescope – Art Through Your Eyes” at Gallery X and the second a month-long virtual Book Club Discussion Group for LGBTQ+ youth, adults and seniors discussing the The Healing Otherness Handbook by transgender author and counselor, Dr. Stacee Reicherzer. Imagined by the South Coast LGBTQ Network, the Book Club will advance the physical and mental well-being of a very marginalized group of people who have experienced financial hardships, unemployment, food insecurity and isolation during the pandemic. The Kaleidescope art exhibit will not only highlight the vibrant arts and culture of the LGBTQ+ community, but will bring renewed exposure to Gallery X, letting people know it is open for business again, and bringing the culturally diverse New Bedford community together for socialization, enrichment and fun.
The SouthCoast Learning Trails, $15,000: Little People’s College, along with the New Bedford Birth to Grade 3 Partnership and the Southcoast Coalition for Early Childhood Education, plans a series of Learning Trails with local artists creating signage along Acushnet Avenue in New Bedford’s north end. Each sign/art installation will contain messaging around early childhood development incorporating “The 5 Basics Principles:” 1) Maximize love, manage stress, 2) Talk, sing, point, 3) Count, group, compare, 4) Explore through movement and play, 5) Read and discuss stories. These five science-based parenting and caregiving tenets support social, emotional, and cognitive development of children from birth to age three. The signs may include activities that involve local sights, sounds, culture or history, and will be translated in multiple languages to ensure access and inclusivity.
“Um Frenti Unido – Um Prujeto di Memória Kultural (A United Front – A Cultural Memory Project)” $12,000: This project aims to archive the living memory of the Cape Verdean American community in New Bedford and explore how “creative placemaking” is a catalyst for the rapid rent increases leading to the displacement and gentrification of the historic African and Indigenous communities in Acushnet (New Bedford). Historically, New Bedford is the first American city that Cape Verdeans immigrated to. Moreover, Cape Verdeans are also the first African people to “voluntarily” emigrate to the United States, post European colonization. This makes this community uniquely important to African, Cape Verdean, and American history. This cultural memory project will elevate first person narratives from this historic African immigrant community. It will also explore the cross cultural relationships and moments of solidarity between the Cape Verdean, African American, Caribbean, Pokanoket, Wampanoag, Nipmuc, Narragansett and Indigenous communities. The project is being led by La Soul Renaissance.
2020: BARR FOUNDATION AND MASSDEVELOPMENT COLLABORATE IN GATEWAY CITIES
In late 2019, the Barr Foundation awarded a grant to MassDevelopment to create a new arts-based economic development program through its Transformative Development Initiative (TDI) called “TDI Creative Cities.” At that time, few if any could have envisioned what was on the horizon. A pandemic the likes of which has not been seen for a century intervened. Still, MassDevelopment chose New Bedford as the pilot city for “TDI Creative Cities” and the “Art Is Everywhere!” grant program was created as one component to an arts and culture-based economic development strategy.
A 3rd EyE Youth Empowerment project called “Your New Bedford” took the initiative for a test drive in 2020. It was a roaring success – and met the challenge of launching during the era of COVID-19. In fact, the pandemic neither slowed the creative pulse of this city – nor stopped the beneficent impulse of the “Art Is Everywhere” idea.
Responding directly to COVID-19 impacts on the arts and the New Bedford community more broadly, 3rd EyE Youth Empowerment retooled and reimagined the original “Your New Bedford” six-part monthly program series in several ways. The group shifted from neighborhood-based pop-up events in community settings to an interactive virtual format, provided paying work for local artists whose incomes were directly affected by the pandemic, diversified artist revenue generation strategies, and addressed the social isolation felt by many residents.
“A thriving community is more than just what’s seen on the surface, it’s also what is not immediately visible,” said Your New Bedford’s Project Director Peter Lonelle Walker. “The New Bedford that visitors see, particularly in our revitalized historic downtown, is fueled by the influence, expression and culture of the communities and neighborhoods that lie outside the tourist map. It’s harder to connect right now, and our goal was to create a platform that empowers and showcases our communities and neighborhoods, celebrating the contributions we and our neighbors have made and will continue to make.”
History of Wicked Cool Places:
In January 2022, New Bedford Creative announced an investment of $70,000 in creative placemaking and placekeeping projects funded by the City of New Bedford’s Arts, Culture + Tourism Fund, with additional funding by Bristol County Savings Bank, Mass Cultural Council, and MassDevelopment’s “TDI Creative Cities” initiative. Grants were awarded to the following projects:
$50,000 funded by the city of New Bedford’s Arts, Culture and Tourism Fund, with additional support by Bristol County Savings Bank:
- The Community Economic Development Center (CEDC) designed “Patio de Comida” specifically to serve the city’s Latino population. It features foods from Guatemala, El Salvador, Dominican Republic, Mexico, and more at Riverside Park. $5,000 will help it host more food vendors, kids activities and local artists, including Mayan dancers, Marimba players, weavers, and contemporary musicians.
- Massachusetts Design, Art, and Technology Institute (DATMA) has been awarded $4,000 to collaborate with New Bedford High School faculty and students, the Consortium for Research & Robotics, and NORPEL Fisheries to create a three-dimensional (3D) public art mural.
- In June, the Queer Arts Council of New Bedford will use $5,000 to bring back the AHA! Pride Block Party to Custom House Square and the historical 54th Regiment Plaza to continue creating and establishing inclusive queer spaces downtown and avenues for the LGBTQ+ creative community and businesses.
- Continuing into its fifth year, Reggae On West Beach is a truly inclusive, diverse, multigenerational, family-friendly summer series for all walks of life. This event has established the West Beach Pavilion as a summer destination venue and is greatly anticipated – each year – and a $5,000 award will continue this new tradition in the south end.
- With local artist Eden Soares, Pilgrim United Church of Christ is being awarded $4,000 to recognize the historic importance of its building as a site where Booker T. Washington spoke when he visited New Bedford in 1895 by installing a mural on the south wall, adding to the renaissance of public art in the city of New Bedford.
- The New Bedford Symphony Orchestra and Cape Verdean Association in New Bedford (CVANB) will partner to present a free, outdoor music festival at CVANB’s Island Park on Acushnet Avenue beside the historic Strand Theater. “Junta Mon: Together in Music” will use $5,000 to make that happen.
- The public mural group SuperflatNB will bring together 12 BIPOC artists to co-create a rotating mural along Acushnet Avenue across from Custom House Square Park with a $5,000 award. The theme for the mural is Harmony within Flora and Fauna.
- New Moon Dance Party has been awarded $5,000 to present a series of outdoor community dance parties during warmer months at Riverside Park. These events will be radically inclusive, providing a safe place for self-expression to all dancers.
- This spring, the New Bedford Art Museum’s artMOBILE Clay-on-Wheels project will be an active participant in several vibrant springtime venues, beginning with SouthCoast Spring Arts and continuing at open space parks in New Bedford thanks to a $5,000 award.
- The Rotch-Jones-Duff House (RJD) and Reverie Theatre Group (RTG), formerly the Glass Horse Project, will partner for a third summer to produce Shakespeare’s most admired and uplifting comedy, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” RTG will stage six free performances across two weekends in August 2022 with the help of a $2,000 WCP grant.
- $5,000 will help the South Coast LGBTQ+ Network to grow its annual South Coast Pride, working with community volunteers, businesses, schools and other nonprofits to create healthy, family-friendly, fun activities, including the 6th annual South Coast Pride all-inclusive community event in Buttonwood Park on June 4.
$5,000 funded by Mass Cultural Council, to support place-keeping within the Seaport Cultural District:
- La Soul Renaissance will curate six cultural events with $5,000 that celebrate and uplift the cultural memory of New Bedford’s African and Indigenous community through spoken word poetry and intercultural discussions facilitated at the Verdean Veterans Memorial Hall. The events will be recorded, broadcast online, and archived to preserve cultural memory.
$15,000 funded by MassDevelopment / TDI and the Barr Foundation as part of the “TDI Creative Cities Initiative” to support arts-based economic development:
- Downtown New Bedford Inc. (dNB Inc) will host the Shop Small Crawl (spring), All Treats, No Tricks (fall), and the Holiday Stroll (winter) in 2022, attracting thousands of residents and visitors to downtown New Bedford with a $3,000 grant.
- In an effort to continue supporting Black-owned businesses, BuyBlackNB will use $5,000 to host outdoor markets where all people are invited to come purchase goods and services from Black-owned businesses in a safe and inclusive space, including a Juneteenth Vendor Market, a celebration of Black Independence Day.
- Building resilience in children from birth to preschool through Music Therapy and Yoga, Rosemary Williams of Mindful Melodies’s main goal is to expand music therapy services for children who do not have the opportunity to have access to this form of therapy in early intervention or preschool settings in low income communities. The LIttle Melodies project will receive $5,000 to further this goal.
- Coastal Foodshed will hire local and diverse musicians twice a month with $2,000 to perform during the Mobile Farm Stand held at Serenity Gardens in New Bedford each Tuesday from 2pm – 6pm from June through October. While Coastal Foodshed’s main goal is always to increase access to locally grown foods for Southcoast residents, they also believe the markets offer the opportunity to celebrate and build community through cooking demonstrations, music, and arts that bring residents together.
In February 2021, New Bedford Creative announced an investment of $50,000 in creative placemaking projects funded by the City of New Bedford’s Arts, Culture + Tourism Fund, with additional funding by Bristol County Savings Bank. Grants were awarded to the following projects:
3rd EyE Unlimited – (Y)Our New Bedford: The Secret City Revealed draws upon the YourNB framework the group pioneered last year paired with a concept rooted in 3rd EyE’s history. Secret City is the idea that New Bedford contains hidden cultural treasures. (Y)Our New Bedford: Secret City Revealed will consist of four interlocking complementary components, drawing upon the creativity and energy of multiple members of the 3rd EyE team.
BuyBlackNB – BuyBlackNB seeks to connect consumers with Black-owned businesses across the Southcoast. In an effort to continue supporting Black-owned businesses, the group will host an outdoor market in downtown New Bedford’s Custom House Square. There, all people are invited to come purchase goods and services from BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) Owned Businesses in a safe and inclusive place. “In supporting Black-owned businesses, we are working to close the racial wealth gap, strengthen our local economies, foster job creation, and celebrate Black culture,” they write.
Downtown NB, Inc. – Downtown New Bedford, Inc. (dNB) will coordinate a series of seasonal placemaking events in partnership with downtown attractions – shops, restaurants, museums, nonprofits, and other establishments – to draw residents and visitors to the city. Artists, musicians, and performers will be hired for each event, and each will celebrate New Bedford’s unique culture and sense of place, enhancing residents’ quality of life and encouraging the support of the local economy.
Good Company NB – The teen Yoga Project entitled teensXyoga intends to inspire the last stage of the Creative Courts project at Clasky Commons Park – completing the mural on the walls surrounding the court. The Creative Courts project is based on dialogue between locals and the artist, Marie Molteni, and teensXyoga plans to ignite conversation in the space while practicing yoga, meditation, journalling and communication. They will record inspirations and stories throughout the series of four sessions and present them to the artist and her team before she begins the final stages of painting.
New Bedford Art Museum (NBAM/ArtWorks!) – The NBAM/ArtWorks! artMOBILE will continue to be a travelling creative placemaking locale where youth will engage in artistic and inventive instruction with quality art supplies. This year, it will be incorporating mediums and materials that highlight the Museum’s tour de force summer exhibit which will feature Ruth E. Carter, Academy Award-winning costume designer of Black Panther, Malcolm X, Amistad, Do the Right Thing, and other outstanding motion pictures. NBAM anticipates up to 650 youth to be served by this free and accessible program.
New Bedford Festival Theatre – New Bedford Festival Theatre’s Summer Academy will offer its third year of performance opportunities for teen artists – with a helping of social justice theatre. The focus for the Summer Academy 2020 production will be a piece of theatre that allows for diverse casting that is representative of the New Bedford community. “In this volatile and tense climate, NBFT sees the importance of theatre as a safe haven for expression and freedom and growth,” the group states.
New Bedford Symphony Orchestra – ‘Music in the Streets’ (MITS) will enable the New Bedford Symphony Orchestra (NBSO) to collaborate with a number of organizations, bringing music to streets and outdoor locales across the city. Collaborations will include partnerships with Love the Ave, New Bedford Housing Authority, New Bedford Parks, the Cape Verdean Association and others.The goal is to perform 10+ concerts across the city in 2021.
New Deadford; Fitzcarmel LaMarre – “NEW DEADFORD” is a multifaceted, community inclusive project based on a graphic novel telling the rich history of New Bedford through the lens of a zombie apocalypse. Part of the project entails robust community outreach, working with underserved youth at creative arts workshops, in collaboration with 3rd EyE Unlimited, Our Sisters School and the New Bedford Housing Authority.
UMassD CVPA Interior Architecture + Design – This project seeks to revitalize the park space at the corner of Phillips Avenue and Acushnet Avenue – the Phillips Ave Pocket Park. Currently, the park lacks adequate shade or shelter structures, lighting, interactive elements, and recycling and trash receptacles. “The addition of these elements in the space will make it more appealing for community members to use during times of more extreme weather conditions (hot sun, rain, snow) and during the evening hours, if adequate lighting is provided,” they note. This proposal is a continuation of the design proposals developed by University of Massachusetts Dartmouth (UMassD) Interior Architecture + Design (IAD) students in Fall 2020. The faculty member, Stephanie McGoldrick, began this endeavor as a service-learning project for CEDC (Community Economic Development Center) on Acushnet Avenue in New Bedford.
In October of 2019, the first official round of Wicked Cool Places grant program invested $82,000 to creative placemaking projects in the city. 2019-2020 Wicked Cool Places grants include:
3rd EyE Youth Empowerment for the 3rd EyE Open, a youth oriented and family-friendly annual cultural arts festival focusing on the positive energy of hip hop, and 3rd EyE On the Pride, a monthly performance and mentoring opportunity for emerging young performers.
In June of 2019, AHA! (Art, History, Architecture) hosted its first ever Pride-themed event in conjunction with LGBTQ+ Pride Month, and 2020 will continue this nationwide theme, a chance to recognize and celebrate the contributions of LGBTQ+ people in the city historically and present day.
Musician Jeff Angeley and Southcoast Lessons aims to expand its already successful New Bedford public programming from a 3 month “Open Season Series” to a 6 month program that includes monthly events for traditional string band instrumentalists and ukulelists.
Coastal Foodshed is celebrating food and art on a monthly basis throughout the winter season at their Indoor New Bedford Farmers Markets. They will be hosting “Palate to Palette: Art at the Farmers Market,” a free event that will transform their market into an edible canvas. Using ingredients from the vendors as the medium, an artist will create an edible canvas, working with the public to build upon their own palates.
The Community Economic Development Center (CEDC) for the Festival Tipico de Gautemala, a day- long celebration of Maya-K’iche Guatemalan arts and culture, featuring free performances of traditional Mayan marimba music, contemporary Guatemalan music and folkloric dance, plus craft demonstrations such as petate weaving, morral making, tortilla making, traditional kite making and flying, and activities for children.
Fiber Optic Center will create a Jazz Wall mural, and highlight live music and outdoor concerts during street events. The mural will be created in a partnership with New Bedford Historical Society using local artists, placed on the five-story east-facing wall at Fiber Optic Center at 23 Centre Street, where live music is currently performed on Summer AHA nights. The mural will depict several New Bedford musicians who achieved local and national prominence as musicians, composers, mentors, and teachers, such as Paul Gonsalves, Rick Britto, Herbie King, Armstead Christian, Bobby Greene, Joli Gonsalves and Frank “Chico” Monteiro.
Hatch Street Studios Fall & Spring Open Studios & Arts Blog. Located in the city’s north end, Hatch Street Studios is the vibrant creative hub of more than 65 visual and performing artists. Today, dozens of artists create an array of diverse works in various mediums, including painting, drawing, sculpture, fine furniture making and restoration, jewelry, fiber art, photography, and various types of performance arts from music to aerial arts.
Artist Alexander Jardin for the Haskell Jardin Garden and Sculpture, a green-space making project at Allan C. Haskell Public Gardens, owned and maintained by The Trustees of Reservations. The project explores the merging of landscape design as contemporary fine art, and the installation acts as a metaphor for the jewel of a green-space within a dynamic, maritime rich, coastal-urban, environment.
The New Bedford Folk Festival celebrates their 25th anniversary year in 2020. Currently presented and produced by the Zeiterion Performing Arts Center (The Z), the two day festival features 7 stages of nearly 100 folk artists, and over 70 craft vendors juried by festival staff. Thousands of people attend each year, and while some stages are ticketed, most of the festival is free and open to the public.
New Bedford Art Museum/ArtWorks! for Creative Courts, revitalizing a public basketball court at the Carlos Pacheco Elementary School. This transformative art mural-style court project is led by artist Maria Molteni, who engages with the community, covering a wide range of artistic genres as a point of inspiration and feedback for an impactful design that conveys basketball’s broad appeal and the democratic nature of a public court. The location of the basketball court coincides with programs and efforts offered by the Pacheco School and the City of New Bedford in surrounding neighborhoods, like Presidential Heights and Brickenwood Housing.
Reggae On West Beach is a free community event that is inclusive, multigenerational, welcoming and family-friendly for all who attend, celebrating the many different styles of reggae, world music, modern, and more. The event takes place on West Beach in the South End of New Bedford on several Sundays throughout the summer from 3pm-7pm and features food trucks, local vendors, and free kids’ activities.
South Coast LGBTQ Network is encouraging everyone to “Show Your Pride” during June, National Pride Month with the Pride Art Expo at Gallery X and “Art in the Park” – their 4th annual South Coast Pride all-inclusive community event in Buttonwood Park.
Superflat NB is a creative placemaking, mural art project dedicated to beautifying New Bedford while flattening barriers to the arts. This project will create a gallery of murals along Purchase Street across from the Greater New Bedford Community Health Center. It will consist of an eclectic mix of imagery from talented local artists while preserving the art that exists. Showcasing a “postcard” style mural with the words “New Bedford” depicted in graphic lettering with each letter containing imagery painted by separate local artists. The existing TomBob “robot” will remain and be incorporated into the new mural.
In December of 2018, a larger-scale pilot grant program invested $50,000 to creative placemaking projects in the city. 2018-2019 Wicked Cool Places grants:
3rd EyE Open: a free outdoor creative arts festival celebrating the vibrant energy of hip hop culture in downtown New Bedford
Diana Arvanites, Mobile Art Studio for Creative Disruption: transforming an everyday bicycle into an art-creating mobile structure, bringing the joy of creativity to any city street corner, store, or event.
Tracy Barbosa, Kite Festival Workshops: a series of free kite workshops to engage the public to create their own “barrileta” in the traditional Guatemalan way, to be displayed at the Festival Tipico Guatemalan Kite Festival at Riverside Park on September 21, 2019
Co-Creative Center, Commune-n-Tea: an accessible and inclusive community gathering in downtown during AHA! Night, offering a wellness-minded option for fun with a live DJ, locally crafted herbal tea, poetry readings, and a collaborative art project
Community Economic Development Center, Vacant Storefront Art Gallery: four large vacant storefront windows along Acushnet Ave. in the North End will display a rotating cultural exhibit celebrating the diverse cultures of people in the neighborhood
New Bedford Fishing Heritage Center: building on the past success of the Working Waterfront Festival, an event designed to have equal impact with a smaller footprint and sustainable budget.
Seaport Art Walk: In collaboration with Massachusetts Design Art & Technology Institute (DATMA), and in partnership with UMass Dartmouth and Bristol Community College, the Seaport Art Walk launches their fifth year with a Call for Art geared towards students with the theme Wind as part of DATMA’s 2019 Summer Wind series.
Mia Pinheiro, Vecinos: Vecinos (Spanish for “neighbors”) is a temporary gallery and interactive platform for dialogue between neighbors, focused on Mexico and the United States, by the construction of an Ofrenda.
Reggae on West Beach: Celebrating its 4th year, Reggae On West Beach is a series of free community events in the South End, converting New Bedford’s West Beach Pavilion into a dance club, with live DJs spinning music from the 1950s to present.
Jeff Angeley, Southcoast Lessons, “Open Season”: A series of open group sessions in a publicly accessible location, with instruments available on-hand, and the belief that every culture has a unique, unfiltered form of folk music, created by the people, and for the people, and without the need for formal training in order to be part of it.
SuperflatNB, Artist-in-Residence: Launching an artist in residence program, SuperflatNB will immerse a world renowned graffiti painter and muralist in underserved neighborhoods in the North End and South End.
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Lighting Installations: Professor Stephanie McGoldrick leads students of Interior Architecture + Design (IAD) to implement the design and installation of temporary lighting throughout downtown’s Wing’s Court.
In April of 2018, a small pilot grant program distributed $5,000 as a test run. Grantees included:
New Bedford Art Museum/Artworks! featuring free events to support their James Audubon exhibit
Seaport Art Walk, celebrating the Bicentennial of Frederick Douglass’s birth with the theme “Freedom and Equality”
SuperflatNB, the city’s new mural program, featuring live artists painting murals along Acushnet Ave during Artweek