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$899,782 AWARDED TO 10 PHILADELPHIA ORGANIZATIONS.

Artblog learned that tomorrow Philadelphia Exhibitions Initiative (PEI) will announce nearly $900,000 in awards to Philadelphia area art institutions for exhibits and planning.

Ten grants have been awarded: Five for exhibitions ($802,220) and five for planning ($97,562) for a total of $899,782. That brings to nearly $6 million PEI’s investment in the local art community over the last seven years.

The five exhibition grant recipients are:

* Asian Arts Initiative ($200,000) for Chinatown In/Flux, site-specific projects by seven artists including Philadelphia’s Mei Ling Hom

* Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts ($161,730) for a site-specific installation by New Yorker Ellen Harvey using video projections, mirrors and wall drawings to comment on PAFA architecture and art (image top just a few inches wide mounted on construction siding on East 59th Street in Manhatten is from Harvey’s “New York Beautification Project”)

* Abington Art Center ($122,490) for a site-specific exhibit by artist J. Morgan Puett on the Quaker notion of the “everyday” as sacred

* Philadelphia Museum of Art ($118,000) for a historical exhibition Pontormo, Bronzino and the Medici: The Transformation of the Renaissance Portrait

* University of Pennsylvania Architectural Archives ($200,000) for a survey of the architecture and design of Antonin and Noemi Raymond

Abington Art Center, Asian Arts Initiative, University of Pennsylvania Architectural Archives, and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts are first-time recipients of PEI grants.

Planning grants went to these five:

* The Print Center ($18,397) for a camera obscura exhibit with artists Ann Hamilton, Vera Lutter, and Abelardo Morell (shown is Morell’s 1997 camera obscura image* of Times Square)

* Rosenwald-Wolf Gallery, The University of the Arts ($19,165) for an exhibit on overlooked women Pop artists

* The Fabric Workshop and Museum ($20,000) for community art initiatives

* Institute of Contemporary Art ($20,000) for exhibit of artists influenced by German artist Martin Kippenberger

* The Rosenbach Museum & Library ($20,000) for exploring artists’ interventions and performances at the museum

We at artblog are bowled over by PEI, which has dragged the Philadelphia art scene into the 21st century, bringing in such shows as “Wallpower at ICA” and the upcoming Olafur Eliasson installation at Arcadia. (Image is Eliasson’s installation seen recently at the Tate Modern. Eliasson’s will do something quite different for Philadelphia.)

By the way, PEI is an arm of Pew Charitable Trusts which also brings us the Pew Fellowships in the Arts, which should be announcing its 2004 recipients in early June.

* copyright Abelardo Morell

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