Art is Community Empowerment: Envisioning Forest Drive ~ Annapolis Capital Punishment

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Art is Community Empowerment: Envisioning Forest Drive

An innovative community planning and design initiative will be offered by the Annapolis Neck Peninsula Federation to engage citizens through art to plan their collective future around congested Forest Drive, south of Annapolis, Maryland.

The program, Art is Community Empowerment: Envisioning Forest Drive, will bring together residents of the communities around Forest Drive on Saturday, February 20, 2010, at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts.  More...

The program is based on the belief that decisions about future growth and development are frequently made without addressing important community concerns.  Citizens need a voice that can be heard above that of developers.  Yet, the technical language of planners is often too arcane, constraining or inadequate for a layperson’s statement of their view of their community’s future.  If planners listened to citizens in their own voice, what would they hear?
Residents of nearby communities will work under the guidance and support of five artists and the professors and students of the graduate department of Landscape Architecture at Morgan State University.  Their goal is the expression in art of the views and hopes of citizens for future changes to Forest Drive.  The architectural professionals will translate that into development ideas, principles and guidelines. Two of the artists are Artists-in-Residence at Maryland Hall: Eastporter Rob Levit is a popular singer, songwriter, poet and community leader, and Mary Jo Arthur of Annapolis Roads is a renowned painter. 
The collaborative design effort will begin at Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, 801 Chase St., Annapolis, MD, at 9:00 AM, Saturday, February 20, 2010, ending at 3:30 PM.  Teams of citizens, artists and landscape architects will tour three areas intersecting Forest Drive -- Bay Ridge Ave., Spa Road and Chinquapin Round Road.  The teams will return to Maryland Hall to work together to express their vision for the future of their communities through artistic forms of drawing, painting, song and poetry.
On March 4, 2010, at Maryland Hall the citizens’ artistic work will be presented to the teams that participate in the design effort.  A final exhibit will be presented to the public on April 22, 2010, at Maryland Hall.
This program is underwritten by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and the support of Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts.  The program has been selected for presentation on March 27, 2010, at Howard University, Washington, DC, at the national meeting of Social/Economic/Environmental Design (SEED), a global network of community-based design professionals.
Individuals and families, young and old, and anyone residing along Forest Drive are encouraged to participate.  All are welcome.  For more information, contact: Kitty VanDeKamp, 410-263-0428,  

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