03/24/21 USC Architecture Faculty and Students Awarded Arts in Action Grants
Two teams of USC School of Architecture faculty and students were awarded Arts in Action grants this academic year. Part of USC Visions and Voices, Arts in Action plants seeds for positive social change by activating intensive arts projects between community partners, students, and faculty.
Faculty members Alison Hirsch and Aroussiak Gabrielian, in partnership with LA Commons, will tackle the future of memorialization as it recognizes ongoing and historically silenced processes of loss and operates as a vehicle of mobilization and collective reckoning. The project, Memorial to Black Lives, will negotiate sites of trauma and resilience in the case study neighborhood of South Los Angeles’s Hyde Park. The team will include a Maymester class of USC students in the community workshopping process and in developing new media “memorials.” Final programming includes a ceremonial procession through sites of significance in fall 2021.
A second grant for $10,000 was awarded to Abri Aiken (B.Arch ’21), Katie Hayes (B.Arch ’21), Darwin Hu (B.Arch ’22), Erin Light (B.Arch ’23), and Justin Wan (B.Arch ’22). In partnership with arts-based organization LA Commons and 30 Youth Artists, their project, Architecture and Advocacy, aims to produce community design charrettes focused on increasing representation of systematically marginalized communities in design professions.
“Amplifying marginalized voices and ensuring diversity within the design field is what Architecture and Advocacy's Design Charrettes are all about,” Aiken said. “We are so proud to work with LA Commons to inspire Youth Artists to achieve design-driven solutions and visualize positive changes in their society. We hope students take away a passion for architecture, as well as feel empowered to envision how the built environment can enhance engagement in their own communities.”
For more information, visit the Arts in Action website: