Anne Dennington and Louis Corrigan just might be changing the face of public art in Atlanta. As executive director of the newly founded Flux Projects, Dennington is working to infuse the public art scene with more opportunities, more audience, and more capital.
Louis Corrigan, who anonymously funded last year's Le Flash event, has come forward and set Flux Projects in motion. The organization will work with artists to produce public art installations and events throughout the year, as well as the annual Flux event, formerly known as Le Flash. The first event will be "Bloom," a series of performances by Lauri Stallings and gloATL at the Lennox Square Mall on Feb. 12-14.
We caught up with Dennington this week to ask her a few questions about Flux Projects and their vision of public art in Atlanta.
What prompted the creation of Flux?
The organization actually began to operate last year, when it incorporated as Le Flash, Inc. to sponsor and present Le Flash 2009. Initial plans were for it to produce just this annual, one-night event and to focus all its efforts on growing it into a city-wide festival along the lines of Nuit Blanche in Toronto. Louis Corrigan quickly realized that his vision for the organization and what he wanted it to accomplish would require it to operate throughout the year and throughout the city. Our model grew to become more of a combination Creative Time / Public Art Fund for Atlanta. We needed a new name to communicate this broader mission, so in 2010 we officially changed the name of the corporation to Flux Projects.
Flux Projects doesn't fall into the typical role of a gallery or museum, though it will be producing exhibitions throughout 2010. How would you describe Flux Project's goals in Atlanta's art scene?
Our goals are to bring more opportunities to our artists, to foster awareness of our citys creative culture, to expand the audience for the arts in Atlanta, and to enrich peoples daily experience of our city. In addition to supporting artists, we want to support our galleries, theatres, and institutions by using temporary projects as outreach to new constituents. Beyond the art scene we want Flux to have a positive economic impact upon Atlanta.
Last year, we reported that an anonymous donor was funding Le Flash. That donor, Louis Corrigan, is no longer anonymous. What made Louis decide to come forward and form his own organization?
Louis is what I call a stakeholder in Atlanta. He works for a company in San Francisco and could really live anywhere, but his heart is here. He looks at Atlanta and sees great unrealized potential. Rather than being dissuaded by what Atlanta is not, he is inspired by what it is and what it can become; and he is willing to invest his time, money, and imagination into bringing that to fruition. Hes here for the long-haul and for the beautiful and surprising journey that will be.
Artscriticatl.com reported that Corrigan "took over" Le Flash/Flux from Cathy Byrd and Stuart Keeler. Are they no longer working together?
Cathy and Stuart collaborated to create Le Flash in 2008. The following year, Cathy accepted a job in Baltimore as the Executive Director of Maryland Art Place, and Stuart continued with his own projects. They were not planning for Le Flash 2009 until Louis approached them about repeating the event. He encouraged them to continue, offered to contribute or raise the necessary funds, and helped with the planning. During this time he incorporated Le Flash, Inc. as a non-profit organization and established a small board of directors. Neither Cathy nor Stuart wanted to stay on and run the organization full-time. Cathy had already moved and was busy in her new position. We are excited that Stuart decided to stay involved, but the extent to which he does depends upon the time allowed by his own projects, some of which we hope are in Atlanta and for Flux Projects.
The first event funded by Flux will be "Bloom," a new work choreographed by Lauri Stallings to be performed Lennox Square Mall on Feb. 12-14. What else can you tell us about this event?
Lauri seeks to break down the barriers between performer and audience, and Bloom will move even further in this direction than pour. While there is a gravitational center to the work, the performers will be dispersed within the mall traffic. Lenox is a unique space, and we are all excited to see how Lauri engages it. Even though I have been speaking with her about the performance, I expect to be completely surprised Valentines weekend.
For Bloom the gloATL dancers will be joined by joined by spoken word artist and hip-hop producer Big Rube, as well as Tom Sherwood and Brad Ritchie, musicians with both the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Sonic Generator.
What else can we expect from Flux Projects in 2010?
Our next project Memory Flash is by a new artist collaborative called John Q, which includes Wesley Chennault, Andy Ditzler, and Joey Orr. Memory Flash presents four installations inspired by oral histories in The Unspoken Past: Atlanta Lesbian and Gay History, 1940 1970, an exhibition curated by Wesley Chennault for the Atlanta History Center. The project pays tribute to the LGBTQs contribution to Midtown and seeks to create new memories based up the Atlanta LGBTQs past.
Flux Projects will soon issue two Calls for Proposals from which we will select projects for this years Flux (previously Le Flash) as well as projects to take place mid-2010 through early 2011.
For a schedule of performance times for "Bloom" visit Flux Projects.
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