VisArts Awarded Implementation Grant for Lincoln Park Community Center Mural Project

By Editorial Team on March 25, 2024
Lincoln Park Community Center Mural Design, Rose Jaffe, 2023-2024

VisArts is pleased to announce it has been awarded a $30,000 Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC) grant to implement a mural project for the Lincoln Park Community Center in Rockville, Maryland.

VisArts will manage the project, which has been developed in partnership with the Lincoln Park community. Work on the Rose Jaffe-designed mural will start this summer and finish in the fall, with an unveiling and celebration of the community’s past, present, and future.

The Lincoln Park community dates to 1891, when a Union veteran started selling small lots to aspiring Black homeowners. Today, Lincoln Park is one of the most diverse communities in Rockville, with residents from the Philippines, El Salvador, Ethiopia, and China.

VisArts received a 2023 MSAC grant to support the planning, artist selection, and design for the mural project and engaged Lincoln Park community members throughout the process. VisArts worked with Lincoln Park Community Center staff to mail surveys to residents and conduct onsite interviews and also met with Lincoln Park community leaders and residents at two community-wide meetings. Community members were asked for input on themes, styles, and topics for the design and also will contribute to the final mural.

VisArts then developed and distributed an open call for artists and formed a Selection Committee comprised of representatives from the Lincoln Park Community Center, Lincoln Park Civic Association, and VisArts’ curatorial staff. The Committee reviewed 21 applications, chose three finalists to develop their concepts into proposals, and selected Rose Jaffe’s design as the winner.

Jaffe is a Maryland artist who has created more than 30 public art projects throughout the Washington, D.C. area. Her mural features whimsical images of residents of all ages and backgrounds dancing, moving, and playing together, as well as elements of Maryland and Lincoln Park history, local flora and fauna, and words of welcome in several languages.

VisArts will direct the project and manage partnerships with the Lincoln Park Community Center, the City of Rockville, and Jaffe, whose mural will beautify the exterior playground-facing wall of the facility, which hosts classes, camps, recreation programs, and afterschool programs.

Alice Nappy, VisArts’ executive director, says, “The mural project enables VisArts to partner with Jaffe and the Lincoln Park community in creating socially engaged public art that amplifies voices of the community’s members, visually embodies the community’s stories, and brings community members together in a shared artistic experience.”

VisArts has implemented public art projects in Rockville and North Bethesda, including installations at Brightview West End, Rockville Town Square, and Westfield Montgomery, and is committed to providing opportunities for artists to work and communities to engage with art. VisArts’ actualization of the Lincoln Park Community Center mural project is an extension of this work.

Nappy shares, “Our goal is to continue partnering with communities and artists to create public art projects that make it possible for everyone to experience the transformative power of the arts.”

About VisArts

VisArts, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, is a hub for the visual arts that engages nearly 30,000 visitors annually through contemporary art exhibitions, a studio artist program, art classes and camps, VisAbility Art Lab (a supported studio for artists with disabilities), community art programs, the annual Rockville Arts Festival, and event space. Founded in 1987, VisArts is committed to our mission of transforming individuals and communities through the visual arts.

VisArts is in Rockville Town Square at 155 Gibbs Street, Rockville, Md. Visit www.visartscenter.org for more information.