The Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland and Twelve Literary Arts in Cleveland are two of four 2020 Joyce Award winners, receiving $50,000 grants to commission new work.
The museum announced in a news release Jan. 7 artists M. Carmen Lane and Shaun Leonardo will be commissioned by moCa to create “Recovering Cleveland’s Jazz Temple,” a yearlong series of arts interventions and programs paying homage to the historic African American live music venue that was the target of racist violence and harassment until its bombing in 1963.
Lane and Leonardo will create a series of workshops that convene various communities who have been directly and indirectly impacted by the Jazz Temple. The workshops will engage movement and storytelling as a way to embody and express trauma, grief and reflection. Their collaboration will culminate in the creation of a new multimedia work and public processional and performance directed by the artists, according to the release.
“This grant will allow us to help address Cleveland’s history of racial and cultural segregation,” said Jill Snyder, executive director of moCa Cleveland, in the release. “Residents will be enriched by an approach that engages the community to draw on collective memories and intergenerational storytelling in order to revisit the past while also focusing on equity and social justice today.”
Twelve Literary Arts will commission Terrel Wallace (aka “Tall Black Guy”), a contemporary music producer, to create “The Land Claps Back,” a series of programs and performances featuring intergenerational poets, vocalists and musicians that will culminate in a sound-recording composed and produced by Wallace. Twelve Literary Arts aims to bring performance poetry to public spaces, while supporting poets and writers of all ages with youth programming, adult professional development and spaces to dream, write and teach into reality a world of social justice and equity, according to its website.
Tracie Hall, director of The Joyce Foundation’s culture program, said in the release she hopes the moCa commission “will bring more attention to Cleveland’s dynamism and to the incredible amount and caliber of cultural production happening in that city,” and, speaks to “Cleveland’s continuing rise as a creative hub.”
The Joyce Awards have granted $3.7 million to commission 69 new works connecting artists with cultural organizations throughout the Great Lakes region. The award is used to support artists in the creation and production of a new work and provides the commissioning organization the resources needed to engage potential audiences, new partners and their larger communities.
The other 2019 Joyce Awards winners include visual artist Faheem Majeed with the Hyde Park Art Center in Chicago, and native artists Ty Defoe and Larissa FastHorse with the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis.
The Joyce Foundation is a nonpartisan, private foundation that invests in public policies and strategies to advance racial equity and economic mobility for the next generation in the Great Lakes region, according to the release. The foundation supports policy research, development and advocacy in five areas: education and economic mobility, environment, gun violence prevention and justice reform, democracy and culture.