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Imagining America 2013 Event Sponsorship Awards

By Imagining America | April 03, 2013

Invincible on stage (Photo courtesy David Smith/Flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0, via On Being Blog)

Invincible on stage, center (Photo courtesy David Smith/Flickr, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0, via On Being Blog)

Imagining America is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2013 Event Sponsorship Awards. These awards are intended to provide monetary support to programs and events in Syracuse and Central New York that reflect IA’s Vision, Mission, Values, and Goals. This year, IA was also keen to support proposals that articulated a connection with IA’s 2013 national conference, to be held in Syracuse, October 4-6.

This year’s awardees are:

The Two Row Wampum Renewal Campaign, “Two Row Wampum Celebration at Onondaga Lake.” Part of the yearlong Two Row Renewal Campaign, the Celebration at Onondaga Lake on June 21 will begin with Tadodaho Sid Hill, Onondaga, offering a Thanksgiving Address at the Inner Harbor before the beginning of a paddling trek across Onondaga Lake. Traveling in two parallel rows, one row of Onondaga and other native people and a second of allies and supporters, the paddlers will land at Willow Bay on the north shore of Onondaga Lake for a festival featuring music, Haudenosaunee social dancing, and speakers. The celebration will provide an opportunity for people from throughout Central New York to learn about Onondaga and Haudenosaunee culture and the history of relations between our peoples. Haudenosaunee craftspeople will demonstrate traditional crafts and offer items for sale. Among the craftspeople will be Alf Jacques, one of the few people who continue to make traditional wooden lacrosse sticks. The event will include storytelling and other activities designed for children and youth.

SU Arts Engage, “Invincible.” The IA award will provide partial funding to bring renowned hip-hop artist and activist Invincible to Syracuse on April 23, 2013. Invincible, aka Ilana Weaver, has received acclaim from fans and critics, and her active involvement in progressive social change has taken her music beyond entertainment toward actualizing change. As a co-founder of EMERGENCE Media, she released her debut album ShapeShifters (2008), and produced award winning videos like The Revival (2009), about women in hip-hop, and Locusts (2008), exploring displacement and gentrification in Detroit. While in Syracuse, Invincible will engage local high school students about the connection between hip-hop and activism.

Community Folk Art Center, “Corporeal Contours.” This award provides partial sponsorship for an art exhibition, Corporeal Contours: Works by Firelei Baez and Andrea Chung. These artists address issues of identity as it relates to the Caribbean through silhouetted forms. The Community Folk Art Center has used IA funds to develop a designated area where the public can interact and respond to the exhibition. The exhibition runs through May 4, 2013.

The Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation, “A Minute of Women’s History.” This initiative was a collaboration between The Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation, the Honors Program at Syracuse University, and local radio station WAER. Gage Executive Director Dr. Sally Wagner and students in her Honors Women’s Studies course (HNR 260/WGS 200, History of Women’s Suffrage Movement: Through the Eyes of Matilda Joslyn Gage) prepared scripts for one-minute Women’s History spots, which were aired on WAER during women’s history month. The spots featured “lost from history” stories that the students studied in class, and were intended to educate listeners and to promote a public performance about the legacy of Matilda Joslyn Gage that was created with IA’s community-campus theater company, The D.R.E.A.M. Freedom Revival.

Black Syracuse Project, “Your Story Oral History Project.” The Your Story Series is a new BSP Oral History initiative. For Spring 2013, it entails four public sessions, in which two individuals per session will participate in 20-25 minute oral history dialogues. The two interviews will be followed by an “Open Mic” segment that allows individuals from the audience to share their experiences on the evening’s topic for five minutes each. The topics are Prison Stories, Learning Stories, Migration Stories, and Love Stories. The project runs through April 9.

601 Tully, “Talk by Dan Seiple.” This event, which took place on March 5 at The Warehouse, was a public citywide talk by 601 Tully Artist-in-Residence Dan Seiple. The talk was about Skulpturenpark (an artist’s space Seiple cofounded on the site of the Berlin Wall) as a model for Syracuse. As Syracuse continues its own city-wide revitalization effort through the arts, this talk provided an opportunity for the city to look at Berlin as a model. The lecture specifically sought to attract the local business community, and economic and community developers to open a dialogue about art and its public impact on the city.

Syracuse Eats, “Food Cultures and Food Sovereignty: A Community Meal.” This event, scheduled for the last week of April, will bring together food cultures of the city—of established and new immigrant groups—around a common meal in a public space. By documenting the sourcing, preparing, cooking, and social spaces of eating, and by sharing these narratives at a meal, Syracuse Eats seeks to open a dialogue about the role of cultural knowledge and practices that sustain communities.  Working collaboratively, the group will identify culturally based approaches for supporting food sovereignty in urban food system policy, planning, and practice.