Imagination Squared! | Jacksonville.FL 2010
Imagination Squared! is a social experiment designed by Christina Foard as an extension of the community-based, participatory design projects she developed with her team within the Arts in Medicine program at UF Health Medical Center Jacksonville. While conversing with sculptor, Dolf James, at his studio in March, 2010, they decided to fabricate and distribute 5″ wood squares as a common platform for the public to modify and return. Foard designed the project instructions and adhered them to the back of each square so the project could move virally. Foard dropped off squares at key cultural institutions around the city, introducing the project to universities, high schools, museums, after school programs in the downtown area, and art groups. Public participants had to agree to donate their completed square, and in exchange, the entire collection would be displayed together publicly. The project idea moved virally between friends and momentum built on Facebook when James would post completed squares each week. After the first 200 squares were returned, it was clear the project was catching on. James became the engine of the project and produced more squares to meet public demand and uploaded images of completed squares, as his studio became the hub of operations for the project.Â Within the three month window, 910 squares were returned.Â Foard and James invited photographer, Doug Eng, to document aspects of the project. Artists, lawyers, accountants, grandmothers, construction workers, students, and preschoolers returned colorful and sculptural squares, collectively serving as a snapshot of Jacksonville in 2010. Squares represented joy, death, birth, arts, history, grief, pets, memories, nature, and all of the faceted nuances of life experience. Foard approached a friend at the Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville about displaying the collection of squares, and the museum agreed to host the unveiling exhibition of Imagination Squared!, which opened in the Atrium on September 1, 2010. The opening set a museum attendance record at that time and became the first Atrium Project in a series of special exhibitions that has continued since. In March, 2011, the entire collection of squares was given to the City of Jacksonville and is permanently installed at the Main Public Library in downtown Jacksonville.
Imagination Squared! | Jacksonville.FL 2010 Team:
Christina Foard: Project Designer/Co-Founder
Dolf James: Producer/Co-Founder
Doug Eng: Photographer
Anna James: All-Around Project Support
Final Installation Funding Support: John and Julia Taylor
Institution Partners: MOCA Jax, Cultural Council of Jacksonville, Main Public Library Jacksonville, City of Jacksonville
Imagination Squared: Pathways to Resilience | Athens.GA 2020
Connecting the People of Athens through Stories, Symbols, and Sounds of Resilience.
Imagination Squared: Pathways to Resilience is a free social experiment that incites contemplation and conversation on how we strengthen and adapt in a rapidly changing world. As an offshoot of Foard’s MFA graduate research at The University of Georgia, she modified the participatory concepts from the previous Imagination Squared! model and added a prompt and sonic components. In this version, Foard distributed 5″ wood squares around Athens for individuals or teams to modify as they considered the role resilience plays in their lives or research. After squares were returned, participants could add personal stories of resilience. Stories and squares were uploaded on imaginationsquared.org. Midway through the project, a sound component was added and those working in sound uploaded abstract compositions on what resilience sounds like. Imagination Squared: Pathways to Resilience was featured in classrooms and workshops around the UGA campus and in homes and clubs around the city of Athens. The collection of all resilience squares and sounds were on display at The Lyndon House Arts Center, Athens, GA between September 10, 2020 – January 20, 2021. Imagination Squared:Pathways to Resilience will be gifted to the City of Athens for permanent installation in 2021. Imagination Squared: Pathways to Resilience included 1030 visual squares and 74 sound squares, thus totaling 1104 responses to resilience.
Imagination Squared:Pathways to Resilience |Athens.GA 2020 Team:
Christina Foard: Project Organizer/Founder
Tai Sherman: Community Advisor/ Athens Land Trust
Mark Mobley: Sound Advisor /ACES Co-Director/ UGA Hugh Hodgson School of Music
Kyle Hunady: Installation, Electrical, and Sound Engineer/ Georgia Tech
Michael Marshall: Social Ecology Advisor /Dodd Co-Director @UGA
Amy Rosemond: Science Advisor /Professor of Ecology @UGA Odum School of Ecology
Craig Osenberg: Project Advisor /Professor of Ecology @UGA Odum School of Ecology
Tyra Byers: Resilience Advisor /Sustainability Advisor @UGA Office of Sustainability
Rebecca Atkins: Imagination Squared Ambassador /PhD Candidate, Odum School of Ecology
Institutional Partners:Â Odum School of Ecology, Hugh Hodgson School of Music, UGA Office of Sustainability, Athens Area Arts Council, Lamar Dodd School of Art: Social Ecology Studio, Lyndon House Arts Center, Creature Comforts Brewery, WUGA Georgia Public Radio, Blick Art Materials, UGA Willson Center for Humanities, Athens Cultural Affairs Commission
Sound Off on Resilience| Athens.GA 2020
Christina Foard: Producer | Rebecca Wright: Producer
Imagination Squared: Resilience in Ecology | Odum School of Ecology @ UGA 2021
Expanding the 2020 version of Imagination Squared, the Odum School of Ecology at the University of Georgia will continue adding squares to a central wall in their lobby area. Students, faculty, staff and their guests are welcome to contribute a free resilience square in this project. Nails are already in place on this wall, allowing participants to add their square to the installation when complete and they can directly upload their story and resilience square to the website. The field of ecology deals with resilience in varying facets and this project will highlight the specific research and facets of social and environmental and systems ecology and types of resilience necessary to thrive.
Imagination Squared 10: Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville | Jacksonville FL 2021
In this unique moment in history, MOCA Jacksonville celebrates Project Atrium’s 10-year Anniversary revisiting a project that helped to inspire it, inviting the community to participate in a creative response to our times.
In September of 2010, a unique public collaborative installation was presented in the MOCA Atrium Gallery. The brainchild of Christina Foard and Dolf James, it consisted of almost 1,000 five-by-five square artworks created by the Jacksonville community. For the purpose of the project, an artist was defined as any person who turned in a completed square. The experience was transformative, and more than 5,000 people attended the opening.
This installation paved the way for the creation of MOCA’s bold Project Atrium Series, that for the past 10 years has featured site-specific installations by emerging and mid-career artists and become a mainstay of the Jacksonville arts scene. The unique placement, dimensions, and scale of the Atrium Gallery provide a compelling challenge to the chosen artists-a call for reinvention and active collaboration with the architecture of the Museum on a monumental scale.
This year MOCA celebrates 10 years of Project Atrium with Imagination Squared10, reminding our community, just as the first iteration of Imagination Squared did a decade ago, that even during these most difficult times, we are each important as individuals-we have a voice, and share a space in this community and world together. We invite you to participate in this celebration, which will take place April 16 – August 8, 2021 in the MOCA Atrium Gallery.
Imagination Squared In Your Community:
Imagination Squared! is a method to celebrate, share, and connect to one another through creativity. It is housed on equity and sharing space as a community. It is inclusive and free. It is anti-hierarchical and is never monetized. Its power rests in its population – as we find the uniqueness and the connection points within a diverse collection of people. Imagination Squared! celebrates those who dare to participate in a community conversation and serves as a gift by the people for the people.
Imagination Squared is about sharing, so we try to share this model for other communities. There are a few criteria required to use the name Imagination Squared, but send us an email and we can help you build a bridge of creativity in your community. (firstname.lastname@example.org)