Creative Life in the Gateway Arts District

Open Review Session: Recap

On January 15th Art Lives Here hosted an open review session of the Creative Placemaking Requests for Proposals (RFPs).  Art Lives Here received over 50 RFP’s and although we set aside 3 hours to openly discuss them all we had to set aside the next morning to continue the review process!  To say the proposals were interesting and exciting is an understatement. We are very thankful to all of the proposals we received, the artists and interested individuals and reviewers who set aside the time to discuss all of the proposals.

Powerpoint ready to go

Powerpoint ready to go

Beforehand, the reviewers had a full week with the proposals to view the supplementary materials including impressive resumes, youtube videos and images of previous work, articles and other accolades. The reviewers included Margaret Boozer of Red Dirt Studios, Rhonda Dallas of the Prince George’s Arts & Humanities Council, Barbara Johnson of Art Works Now, John Paradiso of Gateway CDC and Brooke Kidd of Joe’s Movement Emporium.  The reviewers came prepared and excited to discuss the abundance of creativity in the submissions. During the review session while a powerpoint of a select few images or youtube clips with displayed, each proposal was discussed for roughly 10 minutes.

Reviewers table

Reviewers table

Some questions arose and were used to guide the discussions around the proposals such as whether the proposed project met the Creative Placemaking standards of ArtPlace America. Some proposals fell under Arts Education or New Work categories.  In the case of the proposals falling outside the requirements of Creative Placemaking, Art Lives Here partners were highly encouraged to consider the proposals for their own programming or organization goals. It is important here to note that Art Lives Here is not a grant-making organization. It is a campaign funded by a grant that is reaching out to the community for ideas that will help further the goals of the Gateway Arts District.

The Art Lives Here core team will finalize their decision in the coming weeks with an announcement of the selected projects in early February.  Artists will be contacted, contracts will be negotiated, and once these contracts are finalized Art Lives Here will announce the Spring Season of projects.  The Art Lives Here team learned a lot from this Open Review session. We hope that this collaborative process and spirit will continue long after after the Art Lives Here initiative.

Audience beginning to fill in

Audience beginning to fill in

Please stay in touch with Art Lives Here by following our blog, liking us on Facebook, and following us on Twitter. We will be posting updates and let you know our progress with the proposals.

Lastly please join the Social Media team for a Happy Hour January 30th at 6 pm. This is an opportunity to gather in the spirit of Art Lives Here, forge new friendships, partnerships, discuss ideas, and get to know each other. Join the facebook event here.


About neenajoe

Joe’s Movement Emporium is a cultural arts hub that acts as a catalyst for creativity and economic opportunity for all through productions and programs in education, artist services and work readiness. Located in the town center of Mount Rainier, Maryland within the Prince George’s County Gateway Arts District, the organization supports and promotes creative projects of local artists and community groups. For additional information on programs and events, please visit

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