Express Newark is proud to announce more than $200,000 in Third Space Awards. Awards aggregating more than $200,000 have been given to Newark artists who work collaboratively with Rutgers University–Newark (RU-N) faculty, staff and students on creative projects. The projects span a multitude of mediums including humanities-focused projects, documentary film & digital content, exhibitions, creative entrepreneurship initiatives, climate justice initiatives, visual literacy workshops, and residency programming throughout Express Newark.
Read more about the specific programs and initiatives awarded below.
Jeffrey Billingsley + Rutgers Business School’s Center for Urban Entrepreneurship & Economic Development (CUEED)
CUEED Newark Business Hub Media & Arts Entrepreneurs Program Phase II
The Newark Business Hub is a program to enhance the media and arts entrepreneurial ecosystem in Newark, NJ. This CUEED program builds on the ongoing efforts of RU-N Chancellor’s office Strategic Plan and supports the Garden State Film and Digital Media Jobs Act. The Newark Business Hub will serve 20-30 emerging journalists, bloggers, digital newspaper publishers, public relations professionals, photographers, filmmakers, videographers, fashion and footwear designers, and visual and performing artists through a series of professional development classes and workshops.
Chelsea Odufo + Dr. Lacey P. Hunter, RU-N Department of African American and African Studies
Black Lady Goddess Digital Series Pilot
Black Lady Goddess (BLG) film pilot will be shot, edited and distributed for a potential TV series pick-up. The pilot will be screened around the city of Newark between January 2020 and June 2020. BLG is set in the year 2040 when the world discovers that God is a black woman and reparations have been issued to each person of African descent. Ms. Odufu, an Express Newark Community Media Center alumna, who was recently selected for the inaugural class of Kehinde Wiley artist-in-residence, and Dr. Hunter will engage RU-N students, Newark high school students and residents in safe spaces for discussion around the issues raised in BLG including racial identity, women’s empowerment, afro-futurism, reparations, pan Africanism, social justice, and activism.
Newest Americans at Express Newark + Newark based Poets
Spoken Word at the Intersection of Race & Religion
Spoken Word at the Intersection of Race & Religion is comprised of two events (1) an evening of spoken word and slam poetry on Nov. 5, 2019, and (2) a grassroots convening in the spring of 2020. The slam poetry night will be led by keynote artists and joined by local artists and audience members. Artist included in the fall: Khalid Abu Dawas, Alexis Torres Machado, and Jasmine Mans. Prospective artists for the Spring event include Shane Fuller, Marwa Abulhai and Alok Vaid -Menon. These events create a space of artistic expression, dialogue and exchange of ideas at the intersection of race and religion with a focus on the voices and experiences of Muslims, Arab, African American, Latinx and South Asian communities.
Artistic Passion & Purpose at Express Newark + Newark Designers
Fall & Winter Fashion Show(s) Extravaganza
The Spring & Fall Fashion Extravaganza by Express Newark Artists in Residence, Artistic Passion & Purpose will feature a New York Fashion Week style runway. This fashion show is designed to showcase the gifts and talents of local clothing designers, MUAs, and hairstylists to garner publicity for the Fashion & Design Creatives from the city of Newark NJ, and Express Newark.
Yvonne M. Shirley + LeRon Lee + Community Media Center at Express Newark (CMC)
Newarkive Multimedia Archive
Both alumni of the CMC artist-in-residence program, Yvonne Shirley and LeRon Lee are building the Newarkive, a boutique, living-multimedia intergenerational archive that will allow the sharing of images & connected stories, created by Newarkers. Newarkive will engage with Newarkers across the city, inviting them to share their meaningful personal narratives and images of their lives. The project also connects to existing archives in Newark preserving, sharing and allowing access to the image-stories through the Newarkive website & social media.
Isaac Jimenez + Improv Technicians
Newark Improv Classes & 6thAnnual Newark Improv Festival
Newark Improv will produce weekly community classes and a two-night festival in Express Newark. The weekly classes will each have a capacity of 16 people and run for 8 weeks once a week. Jiménez, RU-N class of 2018, is an aspiring comedian, the only child of Cuban and Puerto Rican parents, and the first in his family to attend college. Much of his time outside class was spent leading the RU-N/NJIT comedy group Improv Technicians and studying improv in NYC.The festival will be held around February 2020 and will feature performances from premier improvisational comedy groups across the US as well as those taking part in the classes.
The 6th Annual Newark Improv Festival is free and open to the public.
Paul Robeson Galleries at Express Newark + Newark Artists
Paul Robeson Galleries 40th Anniversary Programs Initiative
The Paul Robeson Galleries 40th Anniversary celebration will include three program initiatives. These programs include the public art event, Here I Stand & Robeson Salons, and a mural dedication to the achievements of Paul Robeson. Programming will be held at the Paul Robeson Galleries, Main Gallery at Express Newark, the Paul Robeson Galleries Workshops, X-Press, the Design Consortium, and the Express Newark Lecture Hall.
Dr. Genese Sodikoff RU-N Department of Sociology & Anthropology + RU-N Students
Andy Razaf Documentary Film
In Spring 2020 undergraduate courses centered on the production of a documentary film about the life of Andy Razaf (born Andriamanantena Razafinkarefo.) Razaf was an African American songwriter of the Harlem Renaissance with family ties to Madagascar. The production of this film represents a piece of a multiphase project about music and the politics of race in the United States and Madagascar as seen through the prism of one family’s experience.
Daniel Swern + Newest Americans + Rutgers Law School
coLab presentation of 37 Voices & Banished
In partnership with Rutgers Law School and Newest Americans, Daniel Swern of colab Arts will present two of the projects in Fall 2019 at Express Newark to anchor community discussions around their respective issues. Banished, created with support from Rutgers Law School, features interviews with individuals placed on the sex offender registry as juveniles. 37 voices, created with a partnership with Newest Americans, is a hybrid theater-journalism project featuring interviews with Essex and Middlesex County’s most economically venerable.
Carrie Stetler + Newark Women Business Owners
Self-made Women Business Owners in Newark’s South & West Wards—traveling exhibition
Women Business Owners in Newark’s South and West Wards is a photojournalism project that profiles two subjects in each ward and culminates in a traveling exhibition, beginning at Express Newark’s Box Gallery and moving to Akwaaba Gallery. It will feature a 44-page publication and website.
Igor Alves, DreamPlay Media + Newark Residents
Upward Classes DreamPlay Media
Igor Alves, CMC Alumni, will present a multimedia e-learning series, tentatively named, UPWARD CLASS. The multi-part, short episode (3-7 min.) courses will feature experts in the Greater Newark area teaching introductory to intermediate level “master classes” in their field. These classes will be published on a new web platform and shared on affiliate channels. There will be a release party at Express Newark for the content launch in Spring 2020.
Matt Williams + Community Media Center at Express Newark + Newark Residents
I’m So Newark TV Show
The I’m So Newark TV show is all about creating and sharing positive, digital content about the city of Newark New Jersey, and its people: past, present, and future. The Show will highlight artists, entrepreneurs, filmmakers, and residents from the Newark community. Most of the show will be shot and produced in Express Newark’s CMC but will also have street crews capturing positive news that will coincide with studio interviews and shows.
Humanities Action Lab at Express Newark + Ironbound Community Corporation
Climates of Inequality: Stories of Environmental Justice International Launch
Climates of Inequality: Stories of Environmental Justice is an event that is bringing more than 150 issue advocates, university-community partners, and students from around the world to Express Newark for two days of interactive sessions and dialogue. The Humanities Action Lab (HAL) is a coalition of universities, issue organizations, and public spaces in 40 cities (and growing), led from RU-N, that collaborate to produce community-curated public humanities projects on urgent social issues. This fall, HAL is launching our new initiative, Climates of Inequality: Stories of Environmental Justice (COi), which explores climate and environmental justice stories in 22 localities around the world. COi includes a traveling exhibit, web projects, public dialogues, and other platforms for civic engagement. To produce the COi exhibit and participatory platforms, HAL is partnering with Express Newark residents Newest Americans/Talking Eyes Media; RU-N faculty and students across departments and centers, including American Studies, Arts, Media & Culture, History, the Honors College, Honors Living-Learning Community, the Meadowlands Environmental Research Institute, and the Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation Center; and community partners such as Ironbound Community Corporation and the Newark Public Library.
Alliyah Allen + Chrys Davis, Nene Diallo, Gabe Riberio, Jillian Rock
LAND Collective Exhibition
LAND Collective, a Newark-based collective of artists and creatives, plans to curate its first group exhibition, Blackness in the Urban Landscape. This will be a joint exhibition featuring works of Nene Diallo, a photographer, printmaker and mixed media artist, and Chrys Davis, a photographer and videographer. Along with the exhibition, we plan to introduce programming from other members of LAND Collective, including Gabe Riberio who created the NORK Project, an ongoing archive of narratives of Newark, and Jillian Rock, a printmaker and writer.
Emanuele Cacciatore + Newark High School Students
Visual Literacy Workshops
Collaborative Photography, Letterpress, and 3-D Printing workshops that introduce Newark High School students and/or residents to a multidisciplinary creative experience within a themed framework that will enhance and broaden their social/artistic voices and vision. The workshops, created and facilitated by individuals at Express Newark, the Department of Arts, Culture & Media at RU-N, and various community-based arts organizations, will entail a comprehensive art experience that is open and free to interested high school students and community members. Five professors and six talented art and design students will introduce the participants to, and engage them in, various modes of artmaking at Express Newark. The objective of the workshops is to generate, print, and mat a series of photographs, letterpress prints, and 3-D printed pieces that reflect each participant’s expression and realization of their identity as a person and creative individual. The workshops will foster a multifaceted learning environment for RU-N students and high school students highlighting their numerous, varied voices through the visual arts.
Shine Portrait Studio at Express Newark + New Arts Justice + Scheherazade Tillet
Shine Portrait Studio + New Arts Justice Pictures and Progress Artist-in-Residence Program
Pictures and Progress is a joint artist-in-residence program sponsored by Shine and New Arts Justice that invites artists to create new ambitious and hi-profile contemporary art projects that align with the respective missions of art + social justice, art + healing, public art, photography, and portraiture in the broadest sense. Scheherazade Tillet, current artist-in-residence at Shine will build upon the foundational work from her 2018-19 residency to create a locally engaged photography project; lead artist-activist workshops with young people; outline the viability of an ongoing art + activism initiative at Express Newark to empower young people; co-shape Black Portraitures VI conference programming; and create content for a forthcoming book.
Shine Portrait Studio at Express Newark + Scheherazade Tillet
Shine Portrait Studio Residency Book Publishing
Shine Portrait Studio Residency Book Publishing Program allows artists, curators, and writers aligned with a socially engaged art to focus on portraiture in the broadest sense. For the 2019-2020 academic year Shine artists-in-residence Scheherazade Tillet will publish a photobook/catalog of her new locally engaged photography project. Shine will also commission other artists, curators, and writers, to collaborate on artists’ books.
New Arts Justice at Express Newark + Jamel Shabazz
“A Soldier’s Story” Exhibition
A Soldier’s Story by Jamel Shabazz is part of A Call to Peace: an exhibition that occurs both in Express Newark and in Military Park from October 9th to November 11, 2019. A Call to Peace is a collaboratively curated by New Arts Justice and Monument Lab. To create A Soldier’s Story, Shabazz—a renowned photographer—spent two days in residence at Shine Portrait Studio photographing veterans and their families. Shabazz is and one of four lead artists in A Call to Peace which also includes work by Manuel Acevedo, Chakaia Booker and Sonya Clark. A Call to Peace engages Military Park’s evolving racial legacy, its role as a major site of connection in Newark, and the story it reflects for the broader city by centering the question: what is a timely monument for Newark?
Jennifer Bernstein, Visual Means + David Troutt, RU-N Center on Law, Inequality & Metropolitan Equity (CLiME) + Newark Residents (audio “stories”)
Visualizing Equitable Growth
Since Fall 2018, Professor Bernstein, Director of Visual Means at Express Newark and Associate Professor in the Department of Arts, Culture & Media, and students have been collaborating to create abstract visualizations of the data generated by CLiME Director David Troutt‘s Displacement Risk Indicators Matrix or DRIM. The map-based visualizations utilize software tools and code to translate the date into easily understood infographics. Visual Means students have also developed a website concept in which clear visualizations could be comprehended by both a policy maker and public audience. This award will support students gathering audio “stories” of Newark residents whose life experience illustrates the personal impact of circumstance described by the data; further research of other potential sources of data that could be included in the project, such as Abandoned Properties, Population over time, Evictions, Housing conditions, Child Protective Services, NJ Family Care/Medicaid, Food Stamps SNAP Program; and design and creation of elements for a publicity campaign including logomark, poster, and t-shirt.
fayemi shakur + Newark Artists
fayemi shakur, visiting professor, Department of Arts, Culture & Media will work with Newark artists to produce Access Art, a series of master classes organized specifically for students and artists to provide career, community and confidence-building tools to support creative practice. The free professional development classes aim to share a range of expertise with RU-N students and the local Newark arts community presented in collaboration with RU-N faculty and Express Newark partners. Access Art, presented from October 2019 through April 2020, has the goals of broadening intellectual experiences and perspectives on the arts, inspiring new synergies, cultivating creativity, providing an opportunity to learn from experienced art professionals and professors through informed and inspiring dialogue.
Design Consortium at Express Newark, Chantal Fischzang + Lives in Translation (LiT), Jennifer Austin + Newark Residents
Lives in Translation (LiT) Platform
Recent fundamental shifts in immigration policy have left pro bono attorneys struggling to advise their clients without an adequate number of interpreters to meet the need.Fischzang, Associate Professor, Department of Arts, Culture & Media and Director of the Design Consortium at Express Newarkand Austin, Professor, Department of Spanish and Portuguese Studieswill launch the LiT platform, an artistically rendered, immersive visual marketing tool to recruit bilingual university students to meet the growing need for interpreters for non-English speakers seeking legal aid in Newark, NJ.
Occupying 50,000 square feet of the renovated, historic Hahne & Company building in the heart of Newark’s downtown, Express Newark is described as a “Third Space” Collaboratory. It is an arts incubator in which Newark artists and community residents convene, experiment, and innovate in partnership with Rutgers University–Newark faculty, staff, and students to nurture talent, cultivate engaged scholarship and promote social practice. Express Newark provides state-of-the-art interdisciplinary public learning spaces where artists, community residents, and community partners create visual, spoken word, and electronic arts; foster democratic dialogue; and effect positive transformation.
Presently, Express Newark has more than 80 contributors, and its partners include: Artistic Passion & Purpose, Community Media Center, Design Consortium, Form Design Studio, Humanities Action Lab, Institute of Jazz Studies, NewAnce, New Arts Justice, Newest Americans, Paul Robeson Galleries, Shine Portrait Studio, Visual Meansand XPress. Located at 54 Halsey Street, Express Newark’s neighbors in the Hahne & Company building include: Marcus B&P restaurant, Whole Foods, Kite & Key computer store, Launch Pad Coworking Space, Barnes & Noble, various other businesses, and residential apartments.