The next exhibit in the Video Village installation, the film, “One-on-One,” debuted Friday, Dec. 2, 2016. The film features Spartanburg Police Department officers and residents sitting down for conversations about policing, community relations and making neighborhoods safer.
Video Village runs daily from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. through January 7th at 317 Highland Avenue in Spartanburg, South Carolina.
“One-on-One” is projected onto 52 second-story windows in the now-vacant Cammie Clagett housing complex, located at 317 Highland Avenue in Spartanburg. Video Village is one of nine art installations placed in neighborhoods across the city as part of Seeing Spartanburg in a New Light, a temporary public art project sponsored by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Chapman Cultural Center, the City of Spartanburg and numerous community partners.
International light and digital media artist Erwin Redl conceived the Video Village exhibit in order to explore the medium of video with the residents living in the neighborhood. White Elephant Enterprises, a Spartanburg-based production company, helped facilitate the powerful dialogue between Highland residents and Spartanburg police officers for the 30-minute film installation.
Jennifer Evins, President and CEO of Chapman Cultural Center says: “The vision for the Highlands installation was to improve police-community relationships. It’s so exciting to see that vision become a reality.”
Co-directed by Robyn Hussa Farrell and Tim Farrell of White Elephant Enterprises, and Elizabeth Goddard, Executive Director of Spartanburg Art Museum, the Video Village effort has required partners from all across Spartanburg to come together.
Leroy Jeter, president of Highland Neighborhood Association, has helped plan and implement the project for the last 14 months.
“We have had an amazing year sharing our stories, learning how to make videos and collaborating with so many community partners to put this program together,” Jeter said
Visible to viewers during the evening hours, these videos were programmed to run remotely and at varying sequences through 52 small Raspberry Pi computers. The entire computer system was created from the ground up by local non-profit, Hub-ology, in collaboration with computer science students from the University of South Carolina Upstate and Wofford College. The physical space for Video Village is in close proximity to the Bethlehem Center, which has served as the beacon within the Highland neighborhood for 85 years.
“We are grateful to the more than 20 police officers and residents who have come together for this powerful video that highlights the continuing need for collaboration and creative new ideas to keep neighborhoods like Highland safe,” said Robyn Hussa Farrell, co-director of White Elephant Enterprises.
The Video Village installation will run through April 1, 2017. Upon completion, the 52 Raspberry Pi computers used for the film exhibit will be donated to the Bethlehem Center. In addition, the partner organizations involved in this project will work closely with the residents of the Highland neighborhood and the City of Spartanburg to expand the technology network to the adjacent Cammie Clagett Community Center and the nearby James D. Thornton Activity Center.
“We are eager to continue to cultivate the positive relationships between police officers, neighbors, governing agencies and other private and public companies to enhance quality of life, elevate the spirit of the community and learn the 21st century skills critical to financial success,” said Bethlehem Center Executive Director Patrena Mims. “This is a win-win for everyone.”
The City of Spartanburg was selected in 2015 as one of four temporary public art projects from across the United States to receive a grant award from the first-ever Bloomberg Philanthropies Public Art Challenge. Other winning cities are Gary, IN, Los Angeles, CA and a joint project between New York cities, Albany, Troy and Schenectady. For more than a year, Seeing Spartanburg in a New Light has been building relationships between police officers and communities through a collaborative art-making process.