This week we hear from Emily Ruddock, the newly named Director of the Downtown Lynn Cultural District. We recently received some exciting news about our fundraising campaign as well! Warner Brothers, in exchange for shooting the movie "Black Mass" in Central Square, has offered up a challenge grant. The production company will match up to $1,000 in donations from today up until July 10th! You can visit our crowdrise page [HERE], learn more about the project and who is involved and best of all, donate to the cause! Okay, Emily, let's hear what you got!
What brought you to Lynn?
My job as the Director of the Downtown Lynn Cultural District brought me here.
What is your personal favorite public art installation?
The Play Me I'm Yours art installation by Luke Jerram in Boston last year is an example of the power of public art. Working pianos decorated by local artists and community members were placed throughout the city and people were invited to play them whenever and whereever they liked. I love the inclusive nature of this project and the concept that the art wasn't complete until inhabitants played the instruments.
What was your reaction when the big photos first appeared?
"Far out!" I came to the downtown area in advance of interviewing for the director position, to get a sense of the district. I was impressed that public art was already a part of the district and loved the richness the photographs gave to the area. Now I just want to see more public art featuring local artists and community members.
Lynn, Lynn City of Sin, ignore it or embrace it?
Subvert it, then embrace it. I'm especially partial to the section "never come out the way you went in". Transformation can be a really positive thing and is at the heart of any arts or cultural experience. I want visitors to the downtown area to be provoked by the art they see, enriched by the cultures of Lynn and invigorated by events they attend. Sometimes a little sin can be a powerful agent for change...!
Starry Night or The Scream?
Starry Night. I had a super rad art teacher when I was a kid who introduced me to a wide spectrum of artists including Andy Warhol, Keith Haring, Roy Lichtenstein, Claude Monet and Vincent Van Gogh. The thing I love about Starry Night is it captures so much upheaval and turbulence but also depicts the beauty of the night simultaneously. The duality is what I love about it.