Artist Matthew Mazzota and Architect John David Wagner are developing a project in the California neighborhood on the west side of Louisville, and they came on the August 2 LVA's Artebella On The Radio to talk about it. Listen to Keith Waits talk to artists every Thursday at 10am on WXOX 97.1 FM/Artxfm.com.
Matthew Mazzotta works at the intersection of art, activism, and urbanism, focusing on the power of the built environment to shape our relationships and experiences. His community-specific public projects integrate new forms of civic participation and social engagement into the built environment and reveal how the spaces we travel through and spend our time living within have the potential to become distinct sites for intimate, radical, and meaningful exchanges. Through his process, each project starts by creating temporary public spaces for listening – ‘Outdoor Living Room’ - as a way capture voices from local people that might not attend more formal meetings. Stemming from this approach are experiences that involve people from a range of backgrounds working together to create new models of living that contribute to local culture beyond the economic realm. Mazzotta received a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, a Masters of Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Program in Art, Culture and Technology, and is a Loeb Fellow of Harvard University.
John David Wagner is a Master of Architecture student at Harvard Graduate School of Design. His area of interest is in the emerging methods of alternative architectural practice and collaborative artistic engagement in the civic realm. Working with cities such as Fitchburg, MA, Charlotte, NC, and Louisville, KY, his studies and professional practice address art, public space, and community empowerment.
"We have been working closely in the California neighborhood with residents, local artists, and the Metro Louisville government for 1.5 years. They have been on the ground in Louisville for the summer organizing community design meetings and culminating our efforts in a final design to be debuted in mid-2019. The project focus is on food and community space. With a network of partners, we envision a new community food ecosystem, providing affordable meals at a constellation of pop-up restaurants. At the project's focal point will be an installation near several new developments at 18th and Broadway. Here, we are interested in providing a unique new space in California reflective of the neighborhood culture and experience." - Matthew Mazzotta & John David Wagner