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Gettysburg National Park Gets Residencies For Artists

Gettysburg National Park Gets Residencies For Artists

The Gettysburg National Military Park of the National Park Service, in cooperation with the non-profit National Parks Arts Foundation (NPAF) announced today the establishment of a program to host three different artists for 1-month Residencies at the Park. The artists, which will be selected by National Parks Arts Foundation’s curators and advisors, will use the Summer and Fall 2015 residencies to create artwork inspired by their stay at the Gettysburg battlefield, the surrounding woods, over one thousand memorial monuments, and its National Cemetery.
 
The NPS has recently issued “A Call to Action” a path-breaking document that sets out 30 high-priority focus areas at the start of the Park Service’s second century. As Ed Clark, Superintendent of the Park and the Eisenhower National Historic Site, states "In continuing with the long tradition of Arts in the National Parks, it is my distinct pleasure to announce the formation of an Artist-in-Residence program here at Gettysburg National Military Park in partnership with the National Parks Arts Foundation and the Gettysburg Foundation. We hope to inspire, engage and connect with another generation of artists, visitors and youth about the significance and meaning of these hallowed grounds." Programs like this residency will result in expanded visions and experiences that will add meaningfully to the Park experience for visitors now and in the future and represent the highest aspirations of the Park Service’s goals for cultural interactivity in its parks. Gettysburg’s Artists-in-Residence will also directly interact with Park visitors by speaking about their art projects and interests during on-site workshops and lectures.
 
Gettysburg National Military Park has often drawn artists inspired by the dramatic subjects inherent to the epic battle that took place here. For at least a half century, the park has drawn visitors to the Gettysburg Cyclorama, a giant circular artwork, painted by Paul Phillipoteaux and his assistants, depicting a vast panorama of the battlefield at the moment of Pickett’s Charge. The aftermath of the battle also saw friends and rival photographers Matthew Brady and Alexander Gardner working to capture the gritty devastation in iconic images that brought the war truly home to both Northerners and Southerners alike. The artists in this program will follow in the visionary path of these pioneers. The Gettysburg National Military Park Artist-in Residence program will be another interactive public feature to highlight and honor the upcoming Centennial of the National Parks in 2016.
 
NPAF is a 501(c)3 non-profit dedicated to the promotion of the National Parks of the U.S. through creating dynamic opportunities for artworks that are based in our natural and historic heritage. NPAF founder Tanya Ortega has worked with the National Park Service in a wide variety of roles for over 30 years. But she also takes her role of curator and facilitator very seriously. Says Ortega, “What this program is really about is a cycle of inspiration. We connect the artist to this place, the park setting works its magic, the work gets done, visitors get to see and feel, and be inspired by the results; with minimal friction and hassles for everyone.” Artists may apply with their proposals for this residency and find additional information at www.nationalparksartsfoundation.org. Upon completion of their residency, the artist will donate a work to the Park’s collection of exhibits and artwork.
 
The AiR program is made possible through the philanthropic support of donors of all sorts ranging from corporate sponsors, small business, and art patrons and citizen-lovers of the Parks. NPAF is always seeking new partners for its wide-ranging artist-in-residence programs.

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