Amy Blalock, Public Affairs Manager
919.560.4123 x11253 | 919.475.7735 (mobile)
For Immediate Release: September 1, 2020
Durham Seeks Artists and Community Input for Beechwood and Maplewood Cemeteries Public Art Amenities Project
September 7 Artist Submission Deadline; October 23 Public Input Survey Deadline
DURHAM, N.C. – Family members and friends with loved ones buried in two City of Durham cemeteries can now give their input on improved spaces for contemplation and reflection for a public art amenities project scheduled for spring 2021.
As the City improves public amenities through its Capital Improvement Projects (CIP) funding, the General Services Department’s Cultural and Public Art Program now has the opportunity to provide public art amenities for Beechwood and Maplewood Cemeteries. The City established Maplewood Cemetery in 1872, and Beechwood Cemetery in 1924. Maplewood Cemetery is located at 1621 Duke University Rd., and Beechwood Cemetery is located at 3300 Fayetteville St. Both cemeteries offer burial options for traditional, full burials as well as cremations.
Based on the needs of the cemetery through on-site staff feedback, Beechwood Cemetery will feature art-informed benches near the main entrance, and Maplewood Cemetery will feature handrails for the space where ashes of deceased loved ones may be laid to rest. In order to provide the selected artists with a vision and themes for these new amenities at both cemeteries, residents and visitors are asked to share their stories of Beechwood and Maplewood Cemeteries by Friday, October 23 through an online survey or by mailing or emailing their responses here.
Artists for this project will be selected from the City’s Pre-Qualified Artists Registry by a panel of community members, groundskeepers, cemetery administrative staff, and Public Art Committee members. Interested artists should apply by Monday, September 7 at 11:59 p.m. EST. This call is open to all artists who have applied to the registry with preference given to those living within Durham County. Candidates must either identify as or partner with a professional artist, designer, or fabricator, eligible to work in the United States, and be 18 years or older. The City encourages people from diverse backgrounds to apply. Candidates are eligible regardless of race, color, ethnicity, religion, national origin, gender, gender identification, military status, sexual orientation, marital status, or physical ability. All applications must be in digital format and include an artist statement, photos of previous work, a personal résumé, and references. Full submission guidelines, project details, and submission portal are available on the Cultural & Public Art Program’s website.
For questions or additional assistance, contact Cultural and Public Art Program Manager Rebecca Brown with the City’s General Services Department at (912) 398-8075 or by email.
About the City of Durham Cultural and Public Art Program
The Cultural and Public Art Program works to invest and create public art experiences – both downtown and in neighborhoods – that illuminate residents’ history, spark reflection and dialogue, and enhance daily life. Under the Arts, Culture, and Sustainable Communities Division within the General Services Department, the Program manages festivals and special events funding, the City’s public art collection, and two public advisory bodies: the Cultural Advisory Board and the Public Art Committee, which serve the City Council and the City Manager on matters related to the development of cultural assets and public art. Artists and other stakeholders who would like to be notified of current and future art-related opportunities and news can now sign up for alerts through the Cultural and Public Arts Calls for Art mailing list.
About the City of Durham General Services Department
The General Services Department builds and maintains City properties to make Durham a great place for people to live, work, and play. Guided by the City’s Strategic Plan, the department’s core functions include the acquisition and sale of properties, design and management of new construction and renovation projects, building maintenance, landscaping and urban forestry services, cemeteries management, sustainability and energy management, and supporting the nonprofit Keep Durham Beautiful.