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Upcoming Events
10/28/19 - 10/31/19 | St. Paul | MN
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Tours + Events

Preconference Event: [ Tuesday 10/13 ]

Afternoon Tours + Workshops: [ Thursday 10/15 ]   [ Friday 10/16 ]

Evening Events: [ Tuesday 10/13 ]   [ Wednesday 10/14 ]   [ Friday 10/16 ]

Pop-Up Projects + Performances: [ Wednesday 10/14 + Thursday 10/15 ]

Preconference Tour







Norman Bird Sanctuary // Tour + Farmhouse Lunch | 10am - 3:30pm

Discover the Norman Bird Sanctuary (NBS), one of Rhode Island's most celebrated natural preserves and an emerging artist residency. Set in Paradise Valley in the coastal town of Middletown, the Sanctuary sits on 325 breathtaking acres of open farmlands, gently rolling hills, rugged cliffs, and dramatic beaches. The center welcomes over 20,000 visitors a year, connecting the public with the unique topography and wildlife of the area through ecological programming and 7 miles of open trails. Since NBS opened in 1949, countless artists have found inspiration in the diverse landscapes - including the original owner - American painter Mabel Norman, Winslow Homer, and John La Farge. During this special preconference site visit, enjoy an eco-tour with NBS staff; tour Mabel Norman's original 18th Century Farmhouse - transformed through an award-winning renovation into an idyllic artist retreat; and enjoy lunch with fellow attendees. Find full description + details here.

Transportation provided between the conference hotel and Middletown, RI (about 45 minutes).
This is an optional preconference tour - separate registration is required ($45 fee).

Limit: 35 participants.

Afternoon Conference Tours + Workshops

Explore Providence's neighborhoods, art centers, and studios! Space is limited on many tours - sign up during registration to reserve a spot. Transportation will be provided for tours that are not within walking distance.



Artists Doin' It for Themselves! // Treat Tour | 3pm - 5:30pm **SOLD OUT**

Explore a small sample of Providence's artist-run spaces including: 186 Carpenter - a storefront and office space that presents arts programming and events, and The Dirt Palace - a feminist live/work space (and Rauschenberg SEED grantee) in a once abandoned library. Visit each space and receive a  "treat" from artists showcasing what they are currently working on - from listening to a song collectively while eating cookies, to navigating through a studio transformed into an installation performance.




Southside Cultural Center // Arts Incubator Tour + Coffee Installation | 3pm - 5:30pm **SOLD OUT**

Visit the Southside Cultural Center for a tour of this important arts incubator found in the heart of South Providence. Enchant your senses with the sounds of storytelling, the touch of a Latin percussion instrument, the site of innovative theater and the smell and taste of Cuban coffee. What’s up with the coffee? You’ll have to join us to find out what that’s all about! Partner visits include: Providence Improv Guild, RI Black Storytellers, RI Latino Arts, Lydia Pérez and Yoruba2, and The Wilbury Theatre Group.


Providence Public Library // Tour + Scavenger Hunt | 3pm - 5:30pm

Join Special Collections librarians and curators at the the Providence Public Library, for a behind-the-scenes tour of the library's closed stacks, followed by a scavenger hunt through the library's mysterious corners, and culminating in a collaborative art project. Learn how this 139-year-old institution engages Providence's extensive arts and design community through weekly open visual research hours, fellowships connecting local artists with the collections, and inventive partnerships.







Cable Car Cinema // Film Residencies Discussion + Shorts | 3pm - 5:30pm

The Cable Car Cinema, Providence's beloved home of experimental and independent cinema, will host a lively conversation on the art of filmmaking. Join regional filmmakers and supporters as they share selected clips of recent work, and discuss their experiences at the Sundance Institute Lab and the new film residency through the Camden International Film Festival in Camden Maine. Panelists include: Sara Archambault – Film producer + programmer, Program Director | LEF Foundation, Sundance Lab attendee; Ben Fowlie – Executive Director | Camden International Film Festival and Points North Doc Forum, CIFF Labs with CNN/TFI; Margo Guernsey – CIFF Lab attendee; Ann Kim – Sundance Lab attendee; Robb Moss – Creative director, Sundance Advisor for Labs, Lab attendee. Come for the thrilling conversation, stay for the couches and all-you-can-eat popcorn!





AS220 // Comprehensive Tour + Photo Booth | 3pm - 5:30pm **SOLD OUT**

AS220 has gained international recognition for its unjuried, uncensored approach to fostering the arts, and remarkable capacity for leveraging new resources. Take a whirlwind tour of AS220's growing network of programs and facilities - from performance and community spaces, artists studios, community printshops + digital fabrication labs and storefront galleries. The afternoon will include a visit with artist-in-residence Darrel Kinsel and his No Flight Zone installation and a stop in the AS220 Media Arts Labs for a one-of-a-kind green screen photobooth adventure! Accessibility note: Majority of tour is accessible. One area of tour not accessible with wheelchair.






The Steel Yard // Tour + Molten Pumpkins | 2:15pm - 4:30pm **SOLD OUT**

Discover The Steel Yard, a 10,000 sq foot industrial arts complex on the former site of the Providence Steel and Iron Company. Tour the award-winning grounds and industrial arts studios, engage with residents from the Foundry and Ceramics residency programs, and contribute to the Yard's most popular event, the Annual Halloween Iron Pour. Part creative spectacle and part innovative fabrication challenge, each year the Halloween Iron Pour brings together Foundry Residents, students, and the community to design and build large-scale sculptures that will become part of a nighttime iron-casting performance. Following the tour, make your own pumpkin masterpiece ready to be filled with molten iron and transformed into thematic luminaries as part of that upcoming event.


Trinity Repertory Company // Props to Shops Tour | 2:15pm - 4:30pm **SOLD OUT**

Take the unofficial tour of Trinity Repertory Company! Led by Rebecca Gibel, a resident acting company member and Michael Guy, Creative Director and who started with the company in 1973, explore this 1916-built theater complex, tracing both its former life as a vaudeville stage and the company's history within the space. Then go where most tours don't: the overstuffed props basement, the rugged paint shop, the strangely wonderful archive room, and more! Throughout you will be treated to first-hand tales of the theater's 51 year history and its influences on the greater arts community. The afternoon will conclude with a mini-masterclass with a teaching artist from the Brown/Trinty MFA program.





Roger Williams National Memorial // New and Dangerous Opinions | 2:15pm - 4:30pm

In the 1630s, Roger Williams was banished from Massachusetts Bay Colony for his 'new and dangerous opinions' about freedom, liberty, and separation of church and state. Yet these ideas serve as the foundation for the First Amendment of the US Constitution and continue to be hotly debated around the world to this day. Join Roger Williams National Memorial park rangers and resident historian, for a lively discussion about the current life of these ideas and, through a creative project, help us envision the National Memorial's place in the conversation as the National Park Service embarks on its second century. Local fun fact: The memorial is not a monument, but a 4.5-acre park!






Providence Preservation Society // Architecture + Design Walking Tour | 2:15pm - 4:30pm **SOLD OUT**

Benefit Street showcases some of the city's boldest examples of residential and religious architecture of the Colonial and Victorian eras. It is also the setting for some of the most enduring cultural arts institutions in America. Join the Providence Preservation Society for an afternoon of design discovery, with stops at the Rhode Island School of Design, the Providence Athenaeum, and the Providence Handicraft Club, as well as an in-depth exploration of the Providence Art Club, the third oldest such club in America. Along the way, learn the story of how Benefit Street came to be one of the best-preserved historic streets in America.

Please note: Good walking shoes recommended. Umbrella suggested in case of inclement weather.





Public Art Walk // Seen/Unseen with Mary Beth Meehan | 2:15pm - 4:30pm

Join photographer Mary Beth Meehan and the City of Providence Department of Art, Culture + Tourism on a walking tour of Seen/Unseen: Providence - the city's newest (and largest) public art series. Eight large-scale portraits adorn buildings throughout the Washington Street corridor,  revealing the city as it lives and breathes. Hear the stories behind the images and get a chance to speak with Mary Beth about the making and installation of this work. And on the way, explore first-hand the hidden alleys and surprising artscapes of downtown Providence. (Catch Mary Beth’s artist talk as part of the Wednesday morning keynote!)

Please note: Good walking shoes recommended. Umbrella suggested in case of inclement weather.

Evening Events

These vibrant gatherings are a staple of the conference. Open to all attendees!




AS220 | 6pm - 8pm
115 Empire Street + 95 Empire Street, Providence, RI

Connect with old friends and make new ones during the festive opening reception hosted at AS220. Come see how this bustling center is energizing local arts in Providence and help us kick off the 2015 Conference in style. Toast to AS220 on their 30th anniversary! Plus, be sure to check out Discodecahedonism - a psychedelic audiovisual performance by ACRE’s TONY BALKO and A.E. PATERRA (Zombi, Majeure) at 7:30pm.

Free for attendees! Cash bar and light hors d'oeuvres will be served. Generously sponsored by Markel ArtWorks.



Peerless Atrium | 8pm - 10pm
150 Union Street, Providence, RI

Together with the City of Providence, Department of Art, Culture + Tourism celebrate during a fun, not-to-miss night of music, food and reveling in the arts of Providence. Wind down after a day of sessions and the evening keynote at the RISD Museum - and enjoy a great time in this extraordinary downtown location! 

Free for attendees! Beer/wine, food and music by Latin American singer/songwriter, Czésare Santana!


Photo by Stephanie Ewens




Aurora | 5:30pm - 7:30pm
276 Westminster Street, Providence, RI

Close out the conference with a special party at Aurora, a mixed-use creative venue in the heart of downtown Providence. This glittery silver celebration launches our 25th year! Join us for chill music, delicious food, and a super group photo, along with special awards and recognitions! Don't miss the pop-up performance of Connect | Disconnect - a project by ARVID TOMAYKO and HANNAH THOMPSON.

Free for attendees! Cash bar and hors d'oeuvres will be served.


Pop-up Projects + Performances

Notice something unsual? Take a minute to visit and engage with artist projects popping up throughout the conference.






Cliff Wood + Sidy Maiga
Wednesday, 10/14 - 9am - 10am

Sidy Maïga and Cliff Wood are members of the musical group Afrimanding. Sidy is a master percussionist from Bamako, Mali, West Africa, who specializes in djembe and dun dun. He is the recipient of the MacColl Johnson Fellowship in Music Composition as well as multiple grants from the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. Sidy is currently the drummer in residence for Boston's Uhuru Afrika. Cliff Wood is the Executive Director of the Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy, a public-private partnership formed to revitalize Providence's public spaces. Cliff served as the founding director of Providence's Department of Art, Culture + Tourism and is an accomplished saxophone player.





Climate Anxiety Counseling Booth with Kate Schapira
Wednesday, 10/14 - 11:30am - 1:15pm; Thursday, 10/15 - 8:30am - 3pm

At the Climate Anxiety Counseling Booth, share your anxieties about the changing world and practice imagining alternate futures, together. Conversation, writing, mapping, a little piece of art to take away, and maybe even some actual advice.

Kate Schapira is a poet and faculty member of the Brown University, English Department. She is the author of six chapbooks of poetry: Heroes & Monsters (Portable Press forthcoming 2009), Figure With Sunspots (Nasturtium Press forthcoming 2009), The Love of Freak Millways and Tango Wax (Cy Gist Press 2009), Case Fbdy and The Painting (Rope-A-Dope Press 2008), and Phoenix Memory (horse less press 2007). Kate is the curator of the Publicly Complex Reading Series in Providence and serves as a Writer in the Schools in Providence elementary schools.




UPP Arts - procession
Wednesday, 10/14 - 5:30pm

UPP Arts (formerly know as Urban Pond Procession) was founded by artist Holly Ewald and is made up of a revolving group of volunteer artists, scientists, educators and concerned citizens who are all interested in collaborating to promote the health of our urban ponds. UPP Arts facilitates workshops for all ages in which participants learn about the ponds' environmental and health issues while making creative props for an annual celebratory procession to raise further awareness and advocate for the ponds' clean-up, both building community and improving the environment.
UPP Arts will lead attendees from the Biltmore Hotel to the Theaster Gates Lecture at the RISD Auditorium  promptly at 5:30pm.


Eastern Medicine Singers
Thursday, 10/15 - 12:30pm

The Eastern Medicine Singers are a traveling Algonquin drum group who create new music and combines stories and culture into the drum experience. Eastern Medicine Singers started in 2008 to support the NAPEWA Native Youth Program at the RI Indian Council in Providence. The Drum Group now calls the Mount Hope Neighborhood Center home.








Sussy Santana, closing poem for Pell Lecture
Thursday, 10/15 - 2:25pm

Sussy Santana is a poet and performer, born in the Dominican Republic. Author of Pelo Bueno y otros poemas, and RADIO ESL - a poetry CD. Her poems have been featured in various anthologies, including: A la garáta con Puño (UNAM, México), Poetas Latinos de Nueva Inglaterra, Witch Fingers, and Sólo para Locos to be released in 2015. Sussy is a board member of AS220 and a board member at-large for Story on the Public Square (Salve Regina University). She served as Co-Chair for the Transition Committee on Arts, Culture & Cuisine in Providence, RI. Along with artists Shey Rivera and Jason Curzake, she launched the Fluxus Moon Cabaret Series in 2013, featuring the work of about 30 artists from diverse mediums. In collaboration with Marleny Luna and Shey Rivera, she is a founding member of LasTenoras, a feminist poetry collective exploring the Latina experience in the US. Sussy is an alumna of the National Association of Latino Artists and Cultures Leadership Academy. Her recent projects include developing the Latin American Artisans Fair at AS220 in collaboration with Shey Rivera, and the Todas las Fridas community collective.

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