Art Spaces on Tuesday announced NEIGHBORS -- an interactive public art project conceived for HerzRose Park in Terre Haute's Ryves Neighborhood -- has been awarded a $100,000 grant from Vectren Foundation.
Artist Matthew Mazzotta conceived the project through a National Endowment for the Arts “Artworks” grant to Indiana State University in 2018. Art Spaces was the community partner on that phase.
Mazzotta held an “outdoor living room” in the park in September 2018 and residents visited with him for several hours, discussing their needs and wishes for their neighborhood, according to a news release from Art Spaces. His concept is based on residents’ feedback.
One of the most prevalent themes was that businesses in the neighborhood had recently closed, leaving residents with less opportunity to interact. NEIGHBORS is a “pop-up town center” that will offer opportunities for interactive educational, health, social and arts events.
To prepare for programming, Art Spaces, in partnership with ISU's department of multidisciplinary studies and Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology's department of humanities, has formed a group of organizations that will eventually work with members of the neighborhood and service providers "to activate the park as a positive and lively place."
The project will be owned by Terre Haute Department of Parks and Recreation.
Art Spaces is a non-profit arts organization in Terre Haute that has developed a collection of twenty public sculptures located downtown, in city parks, on university campuses and in several other locations. They are available to everyone, free of charge.
This year, Art Spaces will begin implementation of Turn to the River, a multi-year project to reconnect Terre Haute’s downtown with the Wabash River through public art and design.
Art Spaces Executive Director Mary Kramer said, "This is a major contribution to this project and we are incredibly grateful to the Vectren Foundation for providing a leadership gift. Vectren has led a consortium of organizations meeting together to positively impact the Ryves Neighborhood since 2014, and we are so pleased to have their support for NEIGHBORS."
Tom Moore, manager of community relations for Vectren, A CenterPoint Energy company, said, “We have a strong commitment to support the communities we serve. We’re hopeful that this project will continue the momentum that has been generated in the Ryves neighborhood."
More information about NEIGHBORS or Art Spaces many projects and programs is available at wabashvalleyartspaces.com or by calling 812-235-2801.