FRONT International: Cleveland Triennial for Contemporary Art has announced an ambitious residency program to coincide with the opening of its inaugural event.
The residency will bring together international, national, and local artist to produce work individually and collaboratively in the new Glenville Arts Campus, in partnership between the Famicos Foundation, a community development corporation in the Glenville neighborhood, and FRONT.
The new Glenville Arts Campus is being realized in a former medical office building and a former preschool. The office building portion of the campus holds a special place in Cleveland’s history. Designed Robert P. Madison, Ohio’s first African American architect, the building was built in 1962 for a consortium of black doctors. The three upper floors of the building will be converted into 12 living units for the residency, while the ground floor will be transformed into a community cafe and public meeting space. The open floorplan of the preschool will be reconfigured into working space for artists, and the space between the two buildings will be turning into a flexible public area.
The design for the renovations was carried out by a Cleveland Foundation spring class, Creative Fusion: Cuba Edition, faculty and students from Kent State University’s Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative, and the Cleveland Institute of Art. Led by Havana-based architects Sofía Márquez Aguiar and Ernesto Jiménez, students have been working to find ways to reuse and connect the buildings.
“With the residency program beginning in the fall of 2017, the Triennial will start its program and its public engagement with the city of Cleveland,” said Jens Hoffmann, Co-Artistic Director of FRONT International in a press release. “The residencies are one element of an eleven-part program of what we call Cultural Exercises, encompassing exhibitions, publications, research, and public events that together outline how we think about contemporary art as a catalyst for social change and a tool for positive transformation of economic inequality. It was important to us to bring together artists from around the world, the nation, and Cleveland to foster a dialogue about Cleveland’s position in the wider global cultural and political spectrum.”
Co-Artistic Directors Michelle Grabner and Jens Hoffmann have selected a total of 18 artists to live and work in Cleveland leading up to the opening of the Triennial. Like the rehabilitation of the Arts campus, the residency is being supported by Cleveland Foundation’s Creative Fusion residency. On show from July 14 through September 30, 2018, the Triennial is called An American City.