Category Archives: Arts Access

Eleanor Roosevelt holding a Universal Declaration of Human Rights poster

Former First Lady of the United States Eleanor Roosevelt, chair of the drafting committee, holding a Universal Declaration of Human Rights poster in English. UN Photo (1949)

All too often, access to the arts is mistakenly labeled as a “luxury.” Here at Levitt we believe that experiencing art and culture in one’s community is essential to a healthy and happy life—it’s a basic human right. Interestingly enough, arts and culture are actually mentioned in Article 27 of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which will be commemorated around the world this Sunday, Human Rights Day. Continue reading

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A still from the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s music video of a Beethoven Performance at Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles. Virtual reality was used to remotely broadcast the concert with visualizations.

Have you seen the new virtual reality (VR) music video for “Ogilala” by 90s rocker Billy Corgan (Smashing Pumpkins)? Or pop songstress Bjork’s exhibition of virtual and augmented reality videos promoting her new album? Or perhaps the LA Philharmonic’s VR music video filmed at a live Beethoven performance? These are just a few examples of how a once elusive idea in technology—interactive media—is quickly becoming a new frontier for creative production in music.

And interactive media isn’t serving solely as music accompanist; rather, it’s helping us better understand the musical experience as a whole and re-purpose academic research in music into something far more wondrous and accessible. Today, we’re highlighting a few instances at the intersection of music and interactive media that have caught our attention for their creative ingenuity and captivating approach. Perhaps most telling, they help us explore what it means to hear, interpret and love music from an entirely new vantage point. So grab your headphones, enter full screen mode on each video and immerse yourself in these sonorous experiences.

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  • "The Bridge" by Elena Colombo (2011); SteelStacks Arts and Cultural Campus, home to Levitt Pavilion SteelStacks (Bethlehem, PA)

Sounds, colors and people fill a Levitt lawn, infusing a palpable energy into an underused public space. More and more, public art—whether it’s a temporary installation, a permanent mural, or an interactive sculpture, to name a few—is becoming part of the Levitt experience across the country. Below are some of the exciting ways Levitt communities have embraced the multidimensional power of the arts in public spaces. Continue reading

  • UN Habitat and Minecraft teamed up to create Block by Block, a community participation tool allowing residents in underserved communities to play minecraft and create project proposals that reconstruct unused public space in their communities.

Placemaking places people at the heart of its process—empowering individuals by giving them an active voice in shaping the spaces around them, mapping and designing their own communities. This week, we’re highlighting a few fascinating placemaking projects from around the globe that illustrate the beauty of people coming together and creating a shared vision for their community.

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Do you get together with your neighbors on a regular basis? If the answer is no, you’re not alone—according to a 2015 study, only 20 percent of Americans regularly spend time with their neighbors, and a third of the country’s population has never interacted with neighbors. At Levitt, we always encourage people to get to know one another, whether that’s through enjoying free concerts together or through other kinds of community-building activities.

That’s why we love the idea behind Neighborday, a holiday devised seven years ago by media company GOOD to inspire Americans to reach out to folks living next door and plan a communal activity. A block party is one idea, but GOOD offers several other creative ways to forge friendships and build community pride within our neighborhoods. Here are four activities that you and your neighbors can put together just in time for Neighborday on April 29!

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“Kaleidoscope of Dreams” by Canvas by Canvas (2015), created as part of the Star of Texas citywide art exhibition in Arlington, Texas; Levitt Pavilion Arlington/Founders Plaza (Image courtesy of the City of Arlington, TX)

This spring, 20 six-foot fiberglass stars will be brightening up Arlington, Texas, home to Levitt Pavilion Arlington, as part of the Star of Texas public art project. The stars—designed by local artist Chris Cunningham—each feature a different Texan artist’s depiction of the city’s new moniker, “the American Dream City.” Continue reading

LevittPavilionDenverCalling all Colorado-based artists!

Last week, Levitt Pavilion Denver released a Request for Qualifications seeking local artists for a public art project to be displayed at the new music venue, opening in 2017 at Ruby Hill Park.

Funded by Denver’s One Percent for Art Ordinance, the Levitt Denver project follows in the city’s long-standing tradition of celebrating public art. Since establishing its Public Art Program in the 1980s, the Mile High City has installed over 150 works including the Colorado Convention Center’s I See What You Mean (Lawrence Argent) and the Denver Performing Arts Complex’s Dancers (Jonathan Borofsky).

  • Also known as the Big Blue Bear, Lawrence Argent's iconic 40-foot high I See What You Mean sculpture peeks into the Colorado Convention Center's lobby.

Upon completion, the Levitt Denver piece will feature a design that speaks to community-based connections, music, the sky and other celestial themes. The selection panel is open to artwork in all media and materials, including light and sound, with the exception of 2-D artworks and murals.

For more details, check out the full RFQ and apply here by Friday, December 11.

It’s that time of year again. There’s a slight chill in the air and in just over a week we’ll be setting our clocks back an hour. Now is the time to soak up that extra hour of early evening sunlight! And what better way to take advantage of these final long autumn evenings than with a free public art walking tour?

You can enjoy the outdoors while discovering something new about your town (while experiencing some great art in the process). And the best part—these tours are 100% free of charge!

Levitteers, there are tons of exciting public art walking tours right at your finger tips waiting to be enjoyed. Just take a look at these fun public art tours taking place in cities where signature Levitt venues are located! Continue reading

Every stroke of the brush, stitch of the needle, or moment of the memoir uniquely marks our society and contributes to our national character.  This month, we recognize the ways the arts and humanities have forever changed our country, and we recommit to ensuring every American has the opportunity and the freedom to question, discover, and create.
— Presidential Proclamation, National Arts and Humanities Month, 2015  

NAMH_logoHappy 30th anniversary to National Arts and Humanities Month!

Since 1985, October has been recognized by Americans for the Arts and the White House as a time to celebrate the importance of cultural experiences in our lives. At Levitt, we believe that the arts are essential to living healthy, happy lives—and that all people should have access to free, live music, regardless of age or background.

Join us this month in celebrating NAHM and check out some of our favorite reasons to support the arts, adapted from this infographic by Americans for the Arts: Continue reading

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DREAM on display at Burning Man, image courtesy of Bob Pruitt

We’ve all heard the expression, ‘everything is bigger in Texas.’ After getting a sneak peak of the new DREAM sculpture in Arlington, Texas, it looks like dreams are no exception!

The unveiling and dedication for this 54′ long, 12′ tall, metallic LED-lit piece adjacent to Levitt Pavilion Arlington will take place tonight at 7 p.m., in conjunction with the annual South Street Art Festival and a lively performance by folk rocker Luke Wade at Levitt ArlingtonContinue reading