The newly initiated Humanities Without Walls Global Midwest Grant has been awarded to the forthcoming There There: A Journal of Global Contemporary Art in the Midwest, a collaboration among Elise Archias from the University of Illinois at Chicago, Kevin Hamilton from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Tung-Hui Hu from the University of Michigan, Lane Relyea from Northwestern University’s Art Theory and Practice program and Kris Paulsen from Ohio State University. The Humanities Without Walls consortium is funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and administered by the Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities (IPRH) at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign explains Dianne Harris, IPRH director and principal investigator.
Three million dollars in total was awarded to IPRH by the Mellon Foundation so as to fund the first two years of an all-encompassing association of fifteen humanities institutes in and beyond the Midwest. There There was awarded a $27,000 grant, which the collaborators intend to use for the production of an online arts journal. “The first issue of which is slated for October 2015. I am helping the main editor Kris Paulsen, who is assistant professor in the art history department at Ohio State,” briefs Relyea by email.
IPRH launched the Humanities Without Walls grant in January of 2014. “I initiated it at the invitation of a program officer at the Mellon Foundation, and developed the initiatives in collaboration with the humanities center directors at the fourteen other consortial institutions,” explains Harris in an email exchange. The Mellon grant includes funding for two rounds of the Global Midwest awards, with the first round having taken place in fall of 2014 and the second upcoming in fall of 2015. Receiving the Global Midwestern grant is a competitive process, for which a jury consisting of senior humanities scholars outside the Humanities Without Walls consortium chooses the awardees.
The project’s members are not the only ones looking forward to the induction of their new digital arts journal. Harris expresses her enthusiasm and possible benefits of this undertaking saying, “This project has enormous potential to raise the visibility of the arts in the Midwest for a national and international audience. We are very pleased to be able to support this exciting project and look forward to watching its future impact.” (Mahjabeen Syed)