The Jackson Street Music History Project is now up in the vacant lot at 21st and Jackson. Featuring life-sized paintings and photos, the project aims to highlight lesser known yet influential musicians as well as the neighborhood’s well-known music legends.
One of the neighborhood’s empty lots is owned by the Low Income Housing Institute, scheduled to build affordable senior and work-force housing on South Jackson Street in 2013. Curren approached the group about turning some of its unused property into a temporary art installation. They agreed, leased the property to Curren and gave $750 as seed money for the project.
From there, the project kept building momentum.
Casa Latina, a neighborhood nonprofit that matches immigrants with jobs, offered $100, plus volunteer labor to clean up the lot. The Pratt Fine Arts Center said its young students would help with the prints and research a timeline for display.
The local Goodwill pitched in $500. The Jackson Street Corridor Association contributed $1,000. Field Roast Grain Meat on South Jackson Street gave $500.
(Stay tuned for more on that LIHI project)
Curren noted that the Jackson Place neighborhood has a history of organizing to protest the arrival of social service nonprofits that make them feel like a “dumping ground,” according to the Times. Protested organizations include Casa Latina’s arrival and, currently, a proposed Crisis Solutions Center to be operated by the DESC.
The Jackson Street Music History Project is a chance for the neighborhood to unite behind something positive, he said.
“At the core of it, it had to be positive, it had to be working for something rather than against something,” he said.
For more information, check out the project’s Facebook page.