Working with Parkland, Florida, Bloomberg Philanthropies has named the neighboring city of Coral Springs as a winner of the nonprofit’s 2018 Public Art Challenge. As such, Coral Springs will receive $1 million for its project “Inspiring Community Healing After Gun Violence: The Power of Art,” which focuses on recovery and healing in the wake of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting this past February.
Parkland mayor Christine Hunschofsky said in a release, “The Marjory Stoneman Douglas tragedy has traumatized our community in ways we could never have imagined. We believe this project will be an important help with our community’s resilience.”
The Coral Springs Museum of Art will host workshops and artist talks for community members and schools, and five art installations will be on display in parks, libraries, museums, and other spaces throughout Coral Springs and Parkland for about two years. The public exhibition officially begins on February 14, 2019, to mark the one-year anniversary of the shooting.
The works will be created by artists David Best, Kate Gilmore, Carl Juste, Steven and William Ladd, and Rosario Marquardt and Roberto Behar, with input from residents in the community.
Michael Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies, chairman of Everytown for Gun Safety, and former mayor of New York City, said in a statement, “This project is a powerful example of the ways public art can bring communities together and draw attention to important issues. I hope that it will help bring some solace to people who have lost loved ones to gun violence, including all the families in Parkland—and that it will help to prevent further tragedies by inspiring more people to act.”
Bloomberg Philantropies’s Public Art Challenge invites mayors of American cities 30,000 or more residents to submit proposals for temporary public art projects. Over 200 cities applied this year; 14 finalists were selected in July. Earlier this month, Anchorage, Alaska, was the first city announced as a winner.