Dear More Art Community:
It is in a time like this that we become even more aware of the great vulnerability of arts organizations and artists in a country like the United States—and of just how much this precarity is linked to public health and access to vital resources. As a public art organization with a mission of service, we see this as an essential moment to continue to champion the things art does best: heal, inform, connect, re/present, and fill in the gaps where institutions fail us. We are in the process of gathering resources and making contingency plans for how best we can not only serve our immediate community, but the public to whom we’ve always strived to make more art available.
As the guidelines for addressing the spread of COVID-19 continue to evolve, so too do our response and strategy as an organization. We’re currently working to assess the best ways to continue to support our community of artists, residents, fellows, and extended network, as well as to reconsider our anticipated calendar for public projects.
Our 2020 public art projects by Mary Mattingly and Krzysztof Wodiczko each shed light onto the very systemic fallacies and misrepresentations that we have watched at play in the initial botched response to the novel coronavirus pandemic by the US government. Unfortunately, however, it is necessary for us to announce that all planned April dates for the opening and associated programs for Mattingly’s Public Water as well as any other public-facing programs or events, are on hold until further notice. Pre-production of Wodiczko’s project has also been delayed.
We remain committed to all our programs for 2020, but at this time we are unable to offer alternative dates given the number of factors involved in creating the work and in safeguarding everybody’s health. As the situation becomes clearer, we will share the new calendar of events, and look forward to seeing you in person. In the meantime, we are exploring virtual programming around these works, through More Art directly and through our community partners, and will keep you posted on that as well.
Activities for our Engaging Artists fellowship and residency program have moved online, where our staff is holding both planned and additional weekly sessions, providing both the intended tools for long-term support and more immediate resources and strategies in this time of uncertainty and precariousness. If anything, there has been a renewed vigor in the building of our EA community, where we are working closely with each other to build solidarity and possibility, seeking ways to serve and connect both to one another and to our extended networks.
Also: as a good place to start for COVID-19 if you’re looking for resources for artists and arts organizations, we recommend this incredible crowd-sourced list started by Common Field. Please add information you may know to the document, and/or consider sending resources you know of our way, to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll continue sharing them through our networks.
Sending you hope, possibility, and health in this challenging time.
In solidarity, the Team at More Art