Explore the Culture of The Creative Capital through a multitude of moments

PROVIDENCE, RI – PVDFest is about exchanging fresh ideas and new creative concepts from Providence’s vibrant cultural communities and around the world. This year’s PVDFest Ideas brings together a constellation of programs highlighting innovations in culture, technology and more throughout the duration of the festival and the first week of June. PVDFest Ideas will showcase exciting events like the Jewelry District Historic Walking Tour; a family-friendly Make-A-Kinder Providence Make-A-Thon Pitch Fest; and will build off last year’s sold out Ideas Conference keynote with a “Welcome To Your World” Book Club and Reception. This year’s keynote address, delivered by Lars Jan, a genre-bending media artist, will provide insights into HOLOSCENES, his large-scale installation/performance exploring the relationships between climate change and human behavior.

From housing the first Providence building with working electricity to acting as an important site for the development of steam engine technology, and incubating spaces where medical breakthroughs are taking place today, the story of the Jewelry District is one of new, revolutionary ideas. The Jewelry District Historic Walking Tour will discuss the past, present, and future of the neighborhood, highlighting 100 years of innovation, civic pride, and culture. This walking tour will be led by Jewelry District resident and neighborhood historian, Olin Thompson.

Providence is a maker city; a place where artistry and craftsmanship are encouraged and celebrated. This year, festival attendees will have the unique opportunity to see the Creative Capital through the eyes of its burgeoning creatives and makers at the Make-A-Kinder Providence Make-A-Thon Pitch Fest. Inspired by Mayor Jorge Elorza’s signature initiative, PVD Young Makers, teams of youth will imagine new ways of addressing education, health, transportation, recreation, and other community needs during a two-day intensive held on festival weekend. Participants will be challenged to devise how they can contribute to “Making a Kinder Providence,” presenting their ideas to a panel of local leaders, sponsors, mentors, and the public.

Following last year’s PVDFest Ideas sold-out keynote address by author Sarah Goldhagen Williams, KITE Architects will host this year’s “Welcome To Your World” Book Club and Reception. This discussion will explore how the design of our environment affects our well-being while offering an opportunity for attendees to consider the ways human-centered design approaches can encourage civic engagement in our community.

This year’s PVDFest Ideas programming will again showcase work that is interactive, playful, and accessible.  In addition to the many moments taking place prior to PVDFest, festival participants will have opportunities to explore the history of sound in film through the Looping Celluloid program; discuss the evolution of Chicago house music at the Do You Remember House? Book Release Panel and Party; and so much more on festival weekend.

PVDFest Ideas 2019 is presented in partnership with the Rhode Island Historical SocietyProvidence Public Library, and the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities. Programs encourage local organizations and individuals to come together and explore the deeper meanings of Providence’s identity as the Creative Capital.

More events will be added, and schedules are subject to change. For up-to-date information on PVDFest Ideas visit www.pvdfest.com.

Scheduled PVDFest Ideas Events:

Welcome to Your World Book Club and Reception

DATE: Tuesday, June 4

TIME: 5:00PM – 7:00PM

LOCATION:  KITE Architects, One Central St.

As a follow-up to last year’s PVDFest Ideas sold-out, standing-room-only lecture by celebrated author of “Welcome To Your World”, Sarah Goldhagen Williams, KITE Architects will host a book club style discussion to explore ideas of how the design of our built environment affects our fundamental well-being. The evening will include a reception and will be hosted at KITE’s studios and outdoor courtyard in Pearl Street Lofts. Space is limited, registration requested.


The Jewelry District Historic Walking Tour

DATE: Wednesday, June 5

TIME: 12:00PM – 2:00PM

LOCATION:  Corner of Richmond St. and Ship St.

Join Jewlery District resident and neighborhood historian, Olin Thompson, for a two-hour guided walking tour. Participants will discuss the past, the present and the future of the area adjacent to our City’s Downtown Arts District while they learn about its significant buildings and architecture, as well as the people who brought these assets to life. Research for this tour was conducted by Dr. Dietrich Neumann of Brown University’s History of Art and Architecture Department in collaboration with the Providence-Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau.


PVDFest Ideas Keynote Address: Art Activating Community – Artist Lars Jan and Stories of Water

DATE: Thursday, June 6

TIME: 5:30PM – 7:00PM

LOCATION: TBD (check www.pvdfest.com for updates)
Director and media artist Lars Jan is known for HOLOSCENES, a high-tech spectacle exploring the relationships between climate change and  human behavior. Jan will provide insights into how he creates large-scale installation/performances that disrupt public and private spaces that get people to “feel climate change in their guts.” His visit is also an exploratory opportunity for a Providence mounting of HOLOSCENES, a giant aquarium-like performance vehicle animated by a powerful hydraulic system that pumps up to 15 tons of water in and out in less than a minute.


Looping Celluloid: Silents from the Rhode Island Historical Society Film Archives with Live Soundtracking by the PVDLoop All-Stars

DATE: Thursday, June 6

TIME: 7:30PM – 9:00PM

LOCATION: Hosted by 134 Collaborative at Mathewson Street Church (134 Matthewson St.)

This live soundtracking experience will celebrate Rhode Island Historical Society’s amazing film archive while showcasing local artists who perform multi-genre music using live looping techniques.

Featuring: Laurie Amat (curator and conductor), SNOWBEASTS (Elizabeth Virosa & Robert Galbraith), Ky Why, Sweetpea Pumpkin, Alec Redfearn, and Ian Bouras


Do you Remember House? Book Release Panel and Party

DATE: Friday, June 7

TIME: Panel 9:00PM | Performances from 10:00PM – 2:00AM

LOCATION: The Dark Lady, 19 Snow St.

In January 2019, Dr. Micah Salkind released his interdisciplinary study of Chicago house music’s emergence and continued resurgence in the city of its birth. During a fun and informative panel, moderated by Dr. Meida McNeal and featuring Chicago house music pioneers Lori Branch and Lady D, Salkind will discuss the queer of color legacies of Chicago house music and culture, and their relevance to other cultural movements and genres. Following the panel conversation, Lori Branch and Lady D will spin back-to-back DJ sets of house and disco until the lights come up.


Make-A-Kinder Providence Make-A-Thon Pitch Fest

DATE: Sunday, June 9

TIME: 2:30PM – 4:30PM

LOCATION: Providence City Hall, 25 Dorrance St.

Inspired by Mayor Jorge Elorza’s signature PVD Young Makers initiative, teams of youth led by Fab Newport will imagine and prototype solutions to education, health, transportation, recreation, and other community needs while convening for a two-day intensive held during the festival weekend. Participants will be challenged to devise ways in which they can contribute to “Making a Kinder Providence.” They will present their ideas to a panel of local leaders, sponsors, mentors, and the public on Sunday, June 9.

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