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Virtua Street Corners

John Ewing PAI 2006

John Ewing was the PAI Artist in Residence during the Summer of 2006. For details on his residency and the current status of his project, Virtual Street Corners, please visit his blog: www.symphonyofacity.org/RISD/blog.html. This project is still on-going and plans to be realized in the fall of 2008 with support from the Tomfohrde Foundation, the Berwick Research Institute, and other funders.

Project Concept: A street corner in Dudley Sq, Roxbury will be virtually relocated in Coolidge Corner, Brookline, and conversely, a street corner in Coolidge Corner will be transplanted to Dudley Sq. A storefront window in each locale will be transformed to appear like that of the other. Using large video screens, cameras, mics, the project will provide citizens of these neighborhoods with a window into each other’s worlds. People in front of the camera in Brookline will be seen on the screen in Roxbury, and vise versa. The screen images will be life size and a pedestrian in one location will be able to chat in real time with a resident of the other.

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John Ewing is a digital media artist and muralist who creates public art with an emphasis on community participation and social justice.  He spent two years in El Salvador with an international development organization, using the arts to organize and inspire dialogue about human rights.  Other work includes projects in Nicaragua, Uruguay and Cuba, as well as various cities in the U.S.  Local projects include Symphony of a City, which portrayed Boston from 8 different perspectives by installing “headcams” on residents and projecting the resulting video footage on city hall and streaming it on the web (www.symphonyofacity.org).   In 2007 Ewing received an MFA from Rhode Island School of Design and currently directs HUMAN, a Juvenile Rights Advocacy Project in Dorchester that teaches art to incarcerated girls.

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