Working with artist Mierle Laderman Ukeles and a group of interdisciplinary artists, RAIR (Recycled Artist in Residency) will introduce the public to the environmental history and artistic potential of the site of a former scrap metal and transformer salvage facility through a community event and series of creative newsprint publications. This once-contaminated and now-remediated parcel of land situated on an 11-acre site in Northeast Philadelphia will become the new headquarters for RAIR, an organization that works at the intersection of arts, industry, and environmental stewardship. Ukeles has been the artist-in-residence of the City of New York Department of Sanitation since 1977 and is recognized for her work addressing urban waste flows, recycling, and ecology. She will guide RAIR, its curatorial advisors, and team of artists as they work to uncover the varied artistic, ecological, and social potentials of the new location that will serve as a site for large-scale artworks and a center for land use research and arts and ecology education. Participating artists will develop creative responses in the form of free newsprint publications, which will be widely distributed to RAIR’s neighboring communities and during an opening event that will familiarize the public with the site and its history and foster dialogue about sustainability.
Additional unrestricted funds are added to each grant for general operating support.