Summer of Art Series at U.N. Plaza Kicks Off Tuesday, May 8th at Noon

Mayor Edwin M. Lee announced that a broad range of arts-related events will begin along the Central Market corridor beginning May 8th. The Summer of Art series at U.N. Plaza, made possible in part by a $20,000 grant from the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, will run weekly on Tuesdays through September, and is a collaboration of the theater, dance, and music community of the Central Market Arts District. The activation of U.N. Plaza through innovative arts programming is a key element of the Central Market Economic Strategy, the City’s holistic strategy for economic and community development in the district. Last week, the Central Market Economic Strategy was selected by the American Planning Association (APA) Northern California as the winner of their 2012 Grassroots Planning Award.

“The Central Market Economic Strategy is a roadmap to guide our efforts to create jobs, stabilize the community and transform the quality of life for the neighborhood,” said Mayor Lee. “The arts are an integral part of this strategy. I thank the Rainin Foundation and the Northern California Chapter of the APA for recognizing our efforts to create an eclectic cultural arts, small business, entertainment and innovation economy hub in Central Market.”

Mayor Lee released the Economic Strategy (centralmarketpartnership.org) last December to identify high priority activities for the City and private sector partners with the goal of revitalizing and stabilizing Central Market. This 10-month community process highlighted the need for activation of public areas, arts programming, filling vacant storefronts, serving residents, and increasing safety. Along with increased programming of UN Plaza, the City’s Community Safety Ambassadors program and the forthcoming Sixth Street police substation are key action items in the Economic Strategy.

“Summer of Art highlights many of the incredible organizations that call Central Market and the Tenderloin home and make this neighborhood one of the most prolific and richest artistic communities,” said Summer of Art organizer Denia Dance Director Felice Ana Denia. “We are grateful to have the support of the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, North of Market Tenderloin Community Benefit District, UC-Hastings Law School and the City to allow the public to experience these performances for free.”

About Summer of Art
Summer of Art is a collaborative project overseen by advisory board members Brad Erickson of Theatre Bay Area, Dick Daley of American Conservatory Theater, Felice Ana Denia of Denia Dance, Janette Gitler of Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Lynn Valente of People in Plazas and Tracy Everwine of Urban Solutions. The project is fiscally sponsored through the Intersection Incubator, a program of Intersection for the Arts. Media Sponsorship is provided by the San Francisco Bay Guardian. Funding and support provided by the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, UC-Hastings Law School and North of Market-Tenderloin Community Benefit District. The Kenneth Rainin Foundation is a private family foundation dedicated to enhancing quality of life by promoting equitable access to a baseline of literacy, enabling inspiration through the arts and supporting research that will lead to relief for those with chronic disease.

These projects are affiliated with The ARTery Project, the San Francisco Arts Commission initiative to support the transformation of the Central Market corridor into a lively and sustainable cultural district with arts at its core. For more information about the events and a full calendar, go to: sfartscommission.org/artery.

Summer of Art Schedule

May 8th – June 5th & August 28th – September 25th
Summer of Art presents What’s On Stage?, a bi-monthly lunchtime dance and theatre preview series showcasing upcoming performances at neighborhood venues such as EXIT Theatre, A.C.T.’s Costume Shop, and CounterPULSE, with music by Tenderloin resident artists.

May 15th – June 26th (bi-monthly) & July 3rd – August 14th (weekly)
People in Plazas, a free outdoor music concert series.

May 8th – May 27th
Cutting Ball Theater’s production of “Tenderloin,” an unforgettable documentary theater piece about the people who call the neighborhood home.

May 17th
Intersection for the Arts presents “First Element,” a mobile music and theater project that will take viewers on a tour of San Francisco neighborhoods.

May 18th – June 23rd
The luggage store gallery presents Streetopia, a large-scale group exhibition taking place in venues throughout downtown San Francisco. Intersection for the Arts will open its Street Art gallery featuring work from youth arts programs.

June 19th
RAWdance at U.N. Plaza with “Two by 24: Love on Loop,” an eight-hour outdoor contemporary dance installation on the experiences we all share as beings who love and need each other.

September 26th – 29th
Flyaway Productions and Dancers’ Group/ONSITE presents “Niagara Falling,” its arresting aerial dance set on the west wall of the Orpheum Theatre.