July 9, 2016
FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture Wins $25,000 Sondheim Artscape Prize
BALTIMORE, MD (July 9, 2016)—Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts (BOPA) are proud to announce that FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture is the winner of the 2016 Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize. The coveted $25,000 prize was presented at this evening’s awards ceremony at The Baltimore Museum of Art. The six other finalists—Theo Anthony, Stephanie Barber, Darcie Book, Larry Cook, Eric Kruszewski, Christos Palios—will receive a $2,500 honorarium established this year by M&T Bank in partnership with BOPA. Works of art by the winner and finalists are on view at the BMA through Sunday, July 31.
FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture describes itself as a “creative activist effort to upset the culture of rape and promote a culture of consent.” The organization was founded in 2010 by Hannah Brancato and Rebecca Nagle, community organizers and artists living in Baltimore. The group deploys its messages against sexual violence through public art projects and events, as well as through the Internet and media campaigns.
On view is a small portion of FORCE’s The Monument Quilt, a growing compilation of the stories of survivors of sexual violence presented on 8-foot by 8-foot squares of red fabric. In 2017, FORCE seeks to bring 6,000 of these quilt squares (produced in workshops across the country) to the National Mall in Washington, D.C., where they will spell out the equally cautionary and consoling phrase “Not Alone.” Accompanying the quilt squares at the BMA is video footage documenting earlier presentations of the quilt. FORCE will also conduct a public awareness program as part of its Sondheim exhibition contribution.
The Sondheim Artscape Prize: 2016 Finalists exhibition is held in conjunction with Artscape and is produced by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts. It is one of the summer’s most highly anticipated exhibitions. It is designed to assist visual artists in the Greater Baltimore region in furthering their careers by allowing them to
pursue tracks in their work that may not otherwise be possible. The artists were selected by an independent panel of jurors, who reviewed the exhibition and interviewed each artist to decide the winner. This year’s jurors are: Tim Griffin, Executive Director and Chief Curator at The Kitchen; Rujeko Hockley, Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art at the Brooklyn Museum; and Mia Locks, Co-Curator of The Whitney Museum of American Art’s 2017 Whitney Biennial.
The Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize exhibition is held in conjunction with Artscape, America’s largest free arts festival, and is produced by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts. Artscape features more than 150 fine artists, fashion designers and craftspeople; visual art exhibitions, outdoor sculpture, and photography; live concerts on three outdoor stages; a full schedule of performing arts including dance, opera, theater, and experimental music; family events such as hands-on projects, children’s entertainers, and street theater; and an extensive variety of local food and beverage vendors. An exhibition of the semifinalists’ work will be shown in MICA’s Decker and Meyerhoff galleries at 1303 West Mount Royal Avenue July 15 through July 31. Artscape’s total economic impact on Baltimore City is $25.97 million, according to a 2012 study by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & The Arts.
The 2016 Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize is made possible through the generous support of the Abell Foundation, Alex. Brown & Sons Charitable Foundation, Caplan Family Foundation, Charlesmead Foundation, Ellen Sondheim Dankert, France-Merrick Foundation, Hecht-Levi Foundation, Legg Mason, M&T Charitable Foundation, Amy & Chuck Newhall, Henry & Ruth Blaustein Rosenberg Foundation, M. Sigmund & Barbara Shapiro Philanthropic Fund, John Sondheim and The Whiting-Turner Contracting Company.
This exhibition is generously sponsored by Stiles Tuttle Colwill and Jonathan Gargiulo.
About the Baltimore Museum of Art
Founded in 1914, the Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) inspires people of all ages and backgrounds through exhibitions, programs, and collections that tell an expansive story of art—challenging long-held narratives and embracing new voices. Our outstanding collection of more than 95,000 objects spans many eras and cultures and includes the world’s largest public holding of works by Henri Matisse; one of the nation’s finest collections of prints, drawings, and photographs; and a rapidly growing number of works by contemporary artists of diverse backgrounds. The museum is also distinguished by a neoclassical building designed by American architect John Russell Pope and two beautifully landscaped gardens featuring an array of modern and contemporary sculpture. The BMA is located three miles north of the Inner Harbor, adjacent to the main campus of Johns Hopkins University, and has a community branch at Lexington Market. General admission is free so that everyone can enjoy the power of art.