Lynden Sculpture Garden
Press Release

Lynden Sculpture Garden to Receive Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts

Reggie Wilson/Fist & Heel Performance Group to Return for Residency and Performance

By - Feb 14th, 2018 10:54 am

National Endowment for the Arts Chairperson Jane Chu has approved more than $25 million in grants as part of the NEA’s first major funding announcement for fiscal year 2018. Included in this announcement is an Art Works grant of $10,000 the Lynden Sculpture Garden to support Citizen, a residency and performance project with Reggie Wilson/Fist and Heel Performance Group at Lynden this summer. The Art Works category is the NEA’s largest funding category and supports projects that focus on the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts, and/or the strengthening of communities through the arts.

“It is energizing to see the impact that the arts are making throughout the United States. These NEA-supported projects, such as this one to the Lynden Sculpture Garden, are good examples of how the arts build stronger and more vibrant communities, improve well-being, prepare our children to succeed, and increase the quality of our lives,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “At the National Endowment for the Arts, we believe that all people should have access to the joy, opportunities and connections the arts bring.”

Working from a model we developed with the choreographer and his company in 2015, Reggie Wilson will adapt Citizen, his latest concert work, during a three-week residency that culminates in an outdoor performance on 28 July 2018. Citizen began as an exploration of the meaning of citizenship for iconic African Americans who chose (choose) to remain at home in the face of pervasive racism—of the “implications, consequences, and complicated humanity inherent in Black folks’ sense of belonging in America.” In a rapidly changing political climate, the question of what it means to belong–or to not want to belong—became more pressing, and Wilson began to ask if a sense of belonging is a private or a public matter. At Lynden, he will work with teachers, children, elders, immigrant communities, and local dancers to expand this dance of solos to include a large cast, and to broaden the conversation about who belongs and what it means to belong.

Citizen is at the center of a larger project, Call & Response. This is the third summer that artists will respond to Folayemi Wilson’s Eliza’s Peculiar Cabinet of Curiosities –a full-scale structure on Lynden’s grounds that is simultaneously a wunderkammer and a slave cabin — and the projects that have grown up around it. Other artists participating in Call & Response include local filmmaker Portia Cobb, textile artist Arianne King Comer (South Carolina), visual artist Tyanna Buie (Detroit) and chef/food historian Scott Barton (New York). Many of these artists have been working individually and collaboratively at Lynden over several years.

About the Lynden Sculpture Garden
The Lynden Sculpture Garden offers a unique experience of art in nature through its collection of more than 50 monumental sculptures sited across 40 acres of park, lake and woodland. The sculpture garden is open to art and nature lovers of all ages daily from 10 am-5 pm; closed Thursdays. Admission to the sculpture garden is $9 for adults and $7 for students and seniors; children under 6 and members are free. Annual memberships are also available.

For more information on projects included in the NEA grant announcement, visit arts.gov/news.

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