Announcing 2023 Interlace Project Grant Recipients
Interlace Grant Fund is proud to announce the inaugural nine recipients of Project Grants for visual arts projects produced and presented in Providence. The grants, totaling more than $50,000, support new and experimental work by local artists who have visions for projects that might otherwise fall outside of traditional arts funding opportunities.
Awarded Artists & Projects
Gloria Fan Duan
Currents Off the Invisible Shore
Currents off the Invisible Shore is a Mixed Reality (MR) journey through a labyrinth of spaces generated from an open-source 3D scanning workshop with the Providence community. The spaces along the shore exist between the liminal thresholds of: private and public spheres, physical and virtual sites, and material and psychological transformations. ‘The Shore’ will be accessible through the internet, in addition to a site-specific installation in Providence.
n00n is a digital art collective by artists Alessia Lorea Arregui and Gloria Fan Duan. They present immersive digital landscapes collaged with socio-aesthetic symbols and forms that stem from personal and collective histories. In these post-biological futures, fragments of tangible processes such as weaving, glassblowing, papermaking, moldmaking and film, survive afloat in a rendered hyperreality. Through a nonlinear process of material (mis)translations, lyrical imagery becomes code.
Alessia Lorea Arregui is a Romanian and Basque-American multi-media artist based in Providence, RI exploring the relationship between physically and digitally driven processes. Material processes such as glassblowing, ceramics, and weaving inform the foundation for her digital making. Arregui’s background as a glassblower began through her interest in optical effects such as camera obscura, magic lantern, and Pepper’s ghost. These early Phantasmagoric AR effects for rendering fantasy correlate to contemporary VR digital spaces, all throughout revealing the uncertainty of visible and nonvisible landscapes.
Gloria Fan Duan, 樊段晓春, is a Chinese-American artist working at the poetic intersections of art, science, technology, and diaspora. Her practice falls within the poetics of science and philosophy, and attempts to capture the mysterious aspects in both fields of inquiry. In doing so she aims to shed light on what is traditionally seen as incomprehensible. Concepts that exist as pure speculation, like death or the future, can never be explained due to the inherent limitations of the human experience. It is because of this that they remain obscured and in constant opposition from our known existence. In order to examine concepts of the unguessed, her works explore simulacrous points in reality, speculative futures based upon the passage of time, and visualizing the invisible.
"The Providence Community Herbarium" is an unofficial survey of Providence vegetation, as seen through the eyes of Providence citizens. The project consists of a portfolio of 15 prints and an interactive zine. The prints will be a collaboration between Heather McMordie and 15 Providence residents, each containing an image of a plant and an accompanying personal story. The zine will be distributed free, inviting Providence into a city-wide plant scavenger hunt.
Heather McMordie is an artist, educator, and curator based in Providence, RI. Her work explores the complexities of soil systems and the lives they sustain through prints, puzzles, artist books, and interactive installations. She is especially interested in the ways in which experiences with art objects can mirror field research experiences and create opportunities for tacit learning. Recent projects have been developed through field explorations and collaborations in Guyana, South Africa, and Rhode Island. Recently, her focus has been on salt marsh soils, coastal restoration efforts, and domestic repair. Learning alongside soil scientists, restoration ecologists, ornithologists, entomologists, and others has impressed upon Heather the importance of physical experience in developing a holistic understanding of place. Her work is therefore an attempt to share these tacit bodies of knowledge (the things one only knows after feeling, smelling, and even tasting an ecosystem) through interactive art objects. Her work is in the collection of the Georgia Museum of Art and has been exhibited in galleries and museums nationally including the RISD Museum in Providence, Rhode Island; the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson Hole, Wyoming; and the Woodmere Art Museum and Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Heather received her MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), and her BFA from the University of Pennsylvania. In addition to her artistic practice, she is an Adjunct Lecturer at Brown University and Arts Curator for Creature Conserve. Her most recent curatorial project “Re-Examining Conservation: Questions at the Intersections of the Arts and Sciences” was exhibited at Brown University’s Cohen Gallery in Spring of 2022. When she’s not making art, Heather is most likely biking to a salt marsh to spend time listening to the grasses and waves.
The Magic Car Wash by Portal Rental
Portal Rental will produce and project a series of short experimental films and animations onto a simulated windshield in their first portal: a magic car wash. Hosted out of a colorfully customized box truck parked in public sites around Providence, this fun, multi-sensory experience brings an unexpected, interactive visual arts experience to many audiences.
MJ Robinson uses and teaches play and creativity as tools to tend anxieties in an ailing world. In the words of their art hero, cartoonist Lynda Barry, “we don’t create a fantasy world to escape reality, we create it to be able to stay.” Influenced by their values as a queer and trans person and prison abolitionist, MJ’s art practices push toward more flexible, abundant, connected societies. Their interdisciplinary work grows out of character, place, and narrative. The worlds they create are much like ours, but with enough of a twist to jar us into reconsidering relationships to our own places and cultures. MJ takes on many roles: illustrator, cartoonist, writer, crafter, videographer, editor, animator, musician, educator, organizer, facilitator, working across and between disciplines because of their love for learning through process: making a mess and seeing what emerges.
Us Naming Us
Us Naming Us is a project by Providence-based artist printmaker Edwige Charlot in collaboration with Providence-native artist Noel Puello. As progeny of an island, Ayiti/Kiskeya, Charlot and Puello will explore Queerness and Transness within the context of Creole and Afro-Latinx identity. The project includes the creation of new visual imagery and sculptural work, a publication, a public presentation and a conversation with the artists.
Edwige Charlot is a French-born immigrant artist-printmaker, based in Providence, RI. Within their Haitian lineage and tradition, they borrow and meld installation, collage, textile and printmaking into a visual, experiential creole. Using matrix-based techniques and technology, Charlot employs multi-layered, lexical works as meditations on identity and belonging, and the enmeshment of diaspora, memory and migration. Charlot has received support for their work from St. Botolph Club Foundation, the Maine Arts Commission, and the Sustainable Arts Foundation. Recently, they have been an artist in residence at BOOM Concepts in Pittsburgh, PA, a guest lecturer at Fordham University, a visiting artist at the Chautauqua School of Art, and an exhibiting artist in the New England Triennial 2022 at the Fruitlands Museum in Harvard, MA.
Noel Puello is a Providence, RI native, Mexico-based artist who is interested in shifting the perception of intimacy and revitalizing a sense of fantasy through the dissection of queer and Afro-Latinx identity through clothing construction, mixed media installations, fiber practice and video. Her work centers the power of physical touch and moves us through a romanticized reality of discarded. She poeticizes the relationships of her Dominican elder and her own personal stories of existing as a queer, fat, femme, racially ambiguous trans person.
Collaborator: Bee Milson
NO MIND COLLECTIVE GALLERIES “The Stories that Entwine Us; Healing and Community”
"No Mind Artists Collective will be organizing a series of galleries and producing a zine showcasing small, local visual artists. Galleries will provide an opportunity for artists to interact with the public, speak about their process, inspirations and highlight the beauty of their individual experience. Collaborators will be chosen with the intention of uplifting marginalized communities. Artists will be given a stipend and access to materials with the intention of making art more accessible.
Lexi Laboy is an emerging artist, musician, and poet who was born in Providence and attended Rhode Island College, where a 2D Media course solidified her creative practice as a mixed-media collage artist. Lexi is interested in the relationship between trauma and its effects on the body, mind, and spirit. This interest, as well as being a Reiki Practitioner, are integral to her art making. She explores themes of queerness, self-growth, healing, authentic expression, and connection to Spirit in her works. Lexi originally created "No Mind'' as a zine in 2018, composed of different artists' works. In 2022 Lexi and Co-Founder Bee Milson created "No Mind Collective" as a way to support emerging, queer, trans, and BIPOC artists through community, connection, and accessibility. Lexi and Bee are excited to create opportunities for storytelling, believing that everyone's story is both significant and full of purpose.
Virginia Thomas, Kwana Adams, Janaya Kizzie, Julio and Gem/ Haus of Codec, Kotonoe Deguchi
Queer Memories Reflection Lab: Where Have We Gone From Here
Selene Means is an organizer/ artist guided by social and communal processes. His project brings together community collaborators from the queer worlds of Providence journalism, archiving, art, and community-building to collectively investigate stories, archives, and ephemera pertaining to queer of color history in RI. They will create four documentary episodes about the QTBIPOC History of Rhode Island. Incorporating new interviews, existing archival materials, and viewing parties to create space to gather, reflect, and galvanize collective action.
For the past 5 years, Selene Means has been on a journey to integrate his grassroots organizing work with his creative practice. Selene is queer trans latine and was born in Mexico before being brought to and raised in South Carolina. He came to Rhode Island for school at RISD but became disillusioned with the art world and gravitated toward activism and building deep roots within the Providence community.
Selene is intensely curious and loves to explore what makes social justice movements possible by meeting people and listening to the stories they have to share. He documents movements using photographs, interviews, videos, articles, online posts, and newspaper articles to create an archive of the movement-building he has been a part of.
Selene currently collaborates with groups working on issues ranging from housing justice to prison abolition to queer and trans activism, often helping these organizations see connections between their work. He understands his skills as an organizer and facilitator as part of his artistic practice. When we can design ways to share power, then we are practicing transforming how power exists in our systems. In her book Holding Change, adrienne maree brown says that "The work of a facilitator is to make it as easy as possible for complex people to do the complex work of shaping change together." This is what he considers his work to be.
Recent work includes directing and producing The Time is Already, a short documentary in 2018; curating How Overdose Prevention Sites Work, a community-led exhibition in 2021; and serving as a lead organizer for a Providence Mayoral Candidates Forum in 2022, along with participating in planning community events and projects for SISTAFire, AMOR, DARE, LGBTQ Action RI, and Jobs with Justice. He has been a research assistant and oral historian for the Rhode Island Foundation on the Equity Action Project: Meet the Neighbors Report and the Providence Public Library’s Queer Oral History Project. He has also contributed as a photojournalist to Uprise.com. He has received community organizing training from the Center for Third World Organizing and Rights for the City Alliance. He has also received communications/narrative power training from the ReFrame Academy and Social Movement Technologies.
In “Filipina Snow”, Hannah Liongoren is producing a semi-autobiographical webcomic, related sculptural objects and a limited-edition artist book, that encapsulate her experience of being a recent immigrant, dealing with aging sick parents remotely, raising a biracial child and adapting to a foreign country, while keeping true to her Filipino identity.
Artist biography:Hannah Liongoren (b. 1985) is an educator, an illustrator and an exhibition designer. She holds a Master om Design (MDes) in Interior Architecture at RISD in the Adaptive Reuse program. Before moving to the US in 2014, she had a thriving career as an illustrator and designer in the Philippines and Vietnam. Liongoren’s practice involves teaching at Umass Dartmouth in the CVPA department where she has created a foundation class that engages her students to contemplate their heritage and identity while learning basic digital imagery software. In 2020, she co-wrote and co-taught a studio class in the Interior Architecture department at RISD that explores speculative exhibition design for futuristic animal exhibitions without captivity. In her recent practice, Liongoren has designed several museum exhibitions, including a 6-month exhibition at the Queens Museum and a permanent exhibition about great white sharks in Provincetown, MA. As an illustrator, Liongoren recently produced a 32-page children’s picture book, entitled “Tommy the Nurse” that tackles gender stereotypes in the nursing industry.
Mer C and
Ocean State Advocacy
How We See Us:
An OSA-Curated Exhibition and Calendar Series
A set of two visual exhibitions and calendars curated by Ocean State Advocacy (OSA). Each exhibition will feature a “call for entry” for work by sex workers in Rhode Island with the intent of destigmatizing and expanding public awareness of erotic labor and sex worker visual expression. This project highlights the history of sex worker organizing, OSA’s mission of providing emergency funds to RI-based sex workers, and the socio-political climate of erotic labor.
In the Spring of 2020, after seeing the incredible efforts of sex working communities supporting each other in the pandemic, OSA started their own mutual aid fund for Rhode Island based sex workers– the Ocean State A$$ Mutual Aid Fund. The mutual aid fund prioritizes trans, queer, bipoc, and street-based sex workers. Since 2020, OSA has grown to include the diverse needs of the Providence community and plans to continue growing and evolving while maintaining core principles of peer support, a commitment to anti-oppressive values, and community care.
Zooey Kim Conner
(a)dressing a haunting
Zooey Kim Conner will produce a mini-collection of three garments and an accompanying risograph printed zine documenting the process of the garments’ construction. The garments, constructed from community-sourced textiles using traditional Korean quilting techniques and design motifs, serve as a physical representation of the process by which the artist, a mixed Korean American, constructs a relationship to their Korean identity in the face of an intergenerational haunting that obscures their access to Korean culture.
Zooey Kim Conner is a mixed-Korean queer and trans artist making zines, prints, costumes, jewelry, and other handmade objects. Their multidisciplinary practice centers queer Asian American experiences and explores what it means to build home and belonging from a marginalized identity.
As a largely self-taught and community-taught artist, Zooey’s practice is broad and eclectic, drawing on skills in illustration, fiber arts, printmaking, writing, organizing, and research. Recent projects have included costume and garment design, sustainably sourced taxidermy, and a zine on the 2001 movie “Shrek” as an allegory for queer experience. Most recently, they published “rat church,” a zine exploring the relationships between roadkill, biracial identity, and the concept of vermin.
They are a studio member at the Binch Press/Queer.Archive.Work shared studio, and an organizer with QTMA.PVD, a mutual aid fund for queer and trans Rhode Islanders. Zooey lives and works in their hometown of Providence.
2023 Project Grant Jurors
Nationally recognized and exhibited, Bob Dilworth’s works on canvas and paper, and assemblages, have won many awards including the 2014 recipient of the Rhode Island State Council for the Arts Fellowship in painting, and grants from the Rhode Island Foundation, University of Rhode Island Center for the Humanities, the University of Rhode Island Council for Research, and the National John Biggers Award in drawing, and the Virginia Commission for the Arts. His work has also won fellowships from the following artist residencies: Iris Project Artist Residency Program in LA, California; Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts in Saratoga, Wyoming; Angels Gate Cultural Center in association with Marymount California University in San Pedro, CA; Playa Artist Residency in Summer Lake, OR; Anderson Ranch Art Center in Snow Mass CO; Hambidge Creative Center for the Arts and Science in Rabun Gap, GA; the Klaus Center for the Arts, San Pedro, CA; Contemporary Artist Center in North Adams, MA; the African American Master Artist in Residence Program (AAMARP), Northeastern University in Boston, MA; and Le Cite International des Artes, Artist Residency, Paris, France. His work is included in corporate and private collections including many Chicago libraries and public institutions. Bob earned a Masters of Fine Art degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and a Bachelors of Fine Art degree from the Rhode Island School of Design. He has taught art and design at colleges and universities throughout the country, including, Princeton University, Brown University, Columbia College in Chicago, and Professor of Art in Painting, Drawing, and Design, in the Department of Art & Art History at the University of Rhode Island. Between 2010 and 2013 he served as chair of that department. From 2014 - 2018, Dilworth served as Director of the URI Main Art Gallery, where he curated academic centered exhibitions by local, regional and national artists. He was Director of Africana Studies at URI from 2018 – 2020. He retired from the University of Rhode Island in the spring of 2020. Bob works as a full-time artist. Currently he is on the Board of Directors of the Jamestown Art Center, a Commissioner for Providence Art and City Life, and he is represented by Cade Tompkins Project.
Lois Harada is an artist, printmaker, and educator. Born and raised in Salt Lake City, she came to Providence to study at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and settled in Rhode Island after graduating with a BFA in 2010. Lois works at DWRI Letterpress, a commercial letterpress printshop where she also prints her own work. Harada utilizes text and the medium of the poster to tell her family’s story of incarceration — her paternal grandmother was interned in Poston, Arizona from 1942 -1945. She takes inspiration from propaganda printed and distributed by the United States government and prints with type and equipment similar to that which would have created the original works. Harada the Chairperson of the Art in City Life Commission serving the city of Providence. She is a member of The Wurks artist collective and has recently joined the board of the Mid America Print Council.
Jan Howard is the Houghton P. Metcalf Jr. Curator of Prints, Drawings and Photographs at the RISD Museum where she previously also served as Chief Curator. Prior to her arrival at RISD in 2000, she spent fourteen years as a curator in the Department of Prints, Drawings and Photographs at The Baltimore Museum of Art. She had an internship at the Philadelphia Museum of Art and curatorial positions at the Spencer Museum of Art at the University of Kansas, where did her graduate work in art history. Her exhibitions and publications have focused on modern and contemporary art. A selection includes Shahzia Sikander: Extraordinary Realities, 2021; Drawing Ambience: Alvin Boyarsky and the Architectural Association (co-curated with Igor Marjanović), 2014; Pat Steir: Drawing Out of Line (co-curated with Susan Harris), 2010; Interior Drama: Aaron Siskind’s Photographs of the 1940s, 2003; and Laurie Simmons: The Music of Regret, 1997.
Satpreet Kahlon is a Panjabi-born artist, organizer, and educator based in Seattle, WA. She received a full-fellowship to pursue her MFA in Sculpture from the Rhode Island School of Design, graduating in 2019. In addition to her studio practice, which has been featured in Hyperallergic and Artforum, she is co-organizer (w/ Asia Tail) of yəhaw̓ Indigenous Creatives, an organization that has supported over four hundred artists in the Pacific Northwest with over $2 million of opportunities since its 2017 founding. For this work, she was named one of the Most Influential People in Seattle by Seattle Magazine in 2019 and is a 2022 Roddenberry Fellow for “new and innovative strategies to safeguard human rights and ensure an equal and just society for all.” Satpreet’s practice has been supported by the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Critical Minded, Vermont Studio Center, the Portland Institute of Contemporary Art, 4Culture, Pratt Fine Arts Center, the Magnum Foundation, Brown University, the Chihuly Museum, and others. Satpreet won the 2022 Bellevue Art Museum Biennial Curatorial Excellence Award, where she will have a solo show in 2023.
Abigail Satinsky organizes exhibitions and is the head of public programs at Tufts University Art Galleries (TUAG) and is the program director for the Collective Futures Fund, which supports artist-run projects in Greater Boston. She has produced exhibitions and public art projects at TUAG with Sofía Córdova, Faheem Majeed, Museum of Capitalism, Sofía Córdova, General Sisters, Erin Genia, Press Press, and many others, and her most recent co-curated exhibition "Art for the Future: Artists Call and Central American Solidarities" is currently traveling to the University of New Mexico Art Museum in Albuquerque and DePaul Art Museum in Chicago and includes a co-published catalogue with Inventory Press. Before coming to TUAG, she curated and collaborated on numerous projects in public space, artist-run galleries, and non-profit organizations, including directing residency, exhibitions and granting programs at Threewalls in Chicago and cofounding Hand in Glove, a national conference for artist-run culture. She was part of the artist research group InCUBATE and founded Sunday Soup, a micro-granting project which initiated 65 chapters internationally. Her other publications include editing the books Support Networks (School of the Art Institute of Chicago/University of Chicago Press, 2014), which chronicles socially engaged art in Chicago over the last one hundred years, and Phonebook (Threewalls, 2011 and 2015), a resource guide on artist-run culture across the United States and received the 2016 Art Journal Prize from College Art Association for distinguished writing.