Public Art Works will begin an original art installation celebrating diversity, hope, and future at the Amos House' Friendship Cafe, with the recent Project Grant from the RI State Council on the Arts, the 'funding father' of Amos House CREATES. Vibrant, dynamic designs reflective of the community's cultural diversity is the theme for this multi-phase art installation using common elements of cafe umbrellas and graphic iconography familiar to the community.
The beginning phase of Amos House CREATES will be an interior installation at the Amos House Friendship Cafe, composed of a series of bright, intricately painted images, based on a shape of a cafe umbrella top that will hang on the walls. These images will be worked into an outdoor installation composed of a group of colorfully painted cafe umbrellas. The outdoor phase will begin to involve the community and customers of the cafe in the art process and celebration of diversity will be represented in each umbrella panel designed after detailed research into the diverse audiences served in the community.
Additional funding is being sought to complete the project phases, to include a similarly designed stained glass indoor installation, where panels will hang in the
cafe's oversized glass windows. Eventually an e-commerce phase will allow the project wide celebration and sustainability by bringing the designs into their own homes in the form of patio umbrellas, aprons, mugs, etc., with some items being made by Amos House BUILDS, another program of the Amos House Group.
"As artists working with social service agencies, we know it is important to document our success as a model of marrying the arts to causes which seek to inspire, motivate and compel individuals to have the strength of spirit and heart to move forward," says Nancy Gaucher-Thomas. Artist Kenn Speiser added, "There is much written about the importance of art to the spirit of hope and positivity so necessary to help individuals face obstacles. Bringing art to this space void of art will surely brighten one's day in very meaningful ways." Gaucher added, "we want people to see our work and say 'Something wonderful is happening at Amos House'- this will widen the ripple from one audience to another. From clients to volunteers, to the community, to donors, to the general public, this art literally 'umbrella' the community with greater understanding, and we are very grateful to RISCA for allowing us the opportunity to work with such a great nonprofit."
PUBLIC ART WORKS is a collaboration of artists Nancy Gaucher-Thomas, Merle Mainelli Poulton and Kenn Speiser working with educators, consultants, nonprofit's and like organizations to bring art into public space. Primary collaborators on Amos House CREATES are Nancy Gaucher-Thomas and Kenn Speiser, artists; and Nancy Thomas of Tapestry Communications. PAW is a member of the Society for Arts and Healthcare and recipient of grants from NEFA, the New England Foundation for the Arts and RISCA, the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. PAW has collaborated on several art projects, murals and installations at Lifespan's Hasbro Children's Hospital's Pedi-Sedation Center, the pediatric emergency room, x-ray, MRI, and CT scan areas. PAW has worked with Home and Hospice Care of Rhode Island as art consultants for their new facility on North Main Street in Providence.
Amos House is a nonprofit social services agency that provides hospitality and direct services to the homeless and poor of Rhode Island. They work in collaboration with other agencies and groups to address issues of hunger, homelessness and poverty. Amos House has the largest soup kitchen in the state. Social services are provided to 15,000+ individuals; Housing for 150+ men and women per night, year round; and has 90 day Transitional housing services. In 2010 the Friendship Cafe opened, providing restaurant/catering services to all of RI. Amos House continues its long tradition of advocacy work in helping people help themselves. "Amos House WORKS. Amos House BUILDS. Amos House CREATES."