Art installation will light up the night


Breathing Lights project focuses on urban neighborhoods

By Jennifer Patterson- Times Union

Vacant buildings around the Capital Region are about to get a lot brighter.

Breathing Lights, one of four winners of the Bloomberg Philanthropies Public Art Challenge, will light up hundreds of windows nightly this fall in Albany, Schenectady and Troy, in an effort to spark community conversation about the issues of vacancy and community revitalization.

Public streets will be transformed in October and November as part of the installation. In addition, Breathing Lights and its community partners, the Albany Barn, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Schenectady and the Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy, announced eight Community Arts Awards winners who will debut their work in October to coincide with the neighborhood lighting project.

"The selected artists ... will expand public dialogue and engagement with the Breathing Lights audience through these inspiring artworks," said Branda Miller, Breathing Lights' arts in education director.

AVillage Inc. with Trinity Alliance will conduct a community mosaic workshop with local artist Jillian Hirsch.

Brenda Ann Kenneally will produce "Story Candles," a 16-foot cargo trailer transformed into a travelling installation that honors children whose lives ended too soon.

Playwright Michael Kennedy will write a script and produce "SRO: Single Room Occupancy," a play set in downtown Albany.

Troy-based poets and performers Nancy Klepsch and Danielle Colin Charlestin will perform "Breathing These Words," a pop-up poetry project featuring readings in vacant buildings.

Ira Marcks and graphic designer Caroline Corrigan will produce an illustrative exploration.

Jamel Mosely will produce "ArborHillstory," a photo and video work documenting stories of longtime residents of Albany's Arbor Hill neighborhood.

The awards are part of Breathing Lights' extensive neighborhood engagement program, led by local nonprofits to share the stories of residents and focus attention on the area's urban landscape.

The project will culminate in the spring of 2017 with a regional summit on vacancy and neighborhood revitalization.

For information, go to https://breathinglights.com.

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