Freshkills Park Named 2019 Rubin Foundation Art and Social Justice Grantee
Freshkills Park’s ongoing Field R/D project has been named one of fifty-seven awardees of the Rubin Foundation’s grants as part of their Art and Social Justice Initiative. Three artists have been selected to participate in the second cohort to co-develop research-based projects in the visual, performing, and media-based arts. The Shelley and Donald Rubin Foundation grant will support the program operations and the development of their projects, an exhibition of their work, and a publication that contextualizes that work.
Through the Art and Social Justice Initiative grant, the Rubin Foundation seeks to “catalyze collective action, promote equality, contribute to advocacy and policy change and develop capacity for greater civic engagement.” These goals align closely with Field R/D’s flexible and innovative take on public art programming, as the site specific backdrop asks artists to engage with the changing landscape, the history of waste, and contemporary questions surrounding both waste and nature in Freshkills Park. This is the fourth iteration of the Art and Social Justice program which began in 2015, and the third time that the Freshkills Park Alliance has received the award.
The selected artists, working closely with Freshkills Park and artist/curator Dylan Gauthier, include Jen Liu, Antonio Serna, and Sto Len. Field R/D is a template for how artists may engage the site as it progresses through its transformation. The project is an initial step in forming a residency program. With an emphasis on process, the curators prioritize documentation of artists’ work and project development throughout the year. Natalie Conn will continue to photograph the group’s collaborative process as well as the artists in their individual spaces of research.
In addition to the on-site production and presentation of the artists’ work, Field R/D will widen the discussion to the New York City community through events, exhibitions, and a final publication. The Rubin Foundation Grant allows for the exploration of environmental issues through art, and through this artistic process we can better understand our own community and world.