And now is your chance to play a part in Dishes and show the city your vision. Salt City Dishes is accepting proposals now until Friday, April 1. That means finish reading this week’s Syracuse New Times, and then get to work putting your ideas into words, so those words can be turned into actions.
“We’re hoping to expand the notion of what an artist is,” said Rachel Somerstein, event co-organizer. “People who are submitting ideas to this event might not call themselves artists in their daily lives and vocations, but they’re inherently creative in ideas they have to make the city better.”
The Dishes organizers are looking for only a few things: the title of your project idea, budget, time frame for completion, city location where you hope to place your idea, and who will help you implement it. Along with that information, include a short summary of why your project idea matters and how it will help the community. And don’t forget to include any progress you’ve already made: visuals, relevant websites and the like.
One specification the Dishes organizers added this time is a no-guerilla-projects rule. “Lots of amazing public art happens guerilla-style, but we’re looking to see more collaboration between artists at the city,” said Stasya Panova, co-organizer, “so people are aware of these projects and know that they’re happening.”
Once the Dishes organizers take a good look at the proposals, a number of them will be selected to be shared at the event on Sunday, May 1, again at St. Clare Theater, 1119 N. Townsend St. Doors will open at 5 p.m., food will be served soon after, and the presentations will start at 6 p.m., with music by the Syracuse University Klezmer Ensemble throughout the evening.
For those of you who attended the last event, here’s the main change, which we should all be happy about, considering this past winter: “The whole idea, schematically, is tied in with what’s going on seasonally,” Somerstein said. “Even if it’s not warm, it’s going to be light, so we want to do something that feels like spring.”
The food—which last time was warm and wintry foods—is slated to be a little more springy. “There’s a spring twist to it,” noted Panova. “The decor of the space will be much more spring-like. I can’t wait until we get to enter the space again. You can just reimagine what that spring energy will be like.”
The food, decor and setup will be slightly different from the Dishes event last summer, but the most important facet will remain the same: the inspiring sense of community. “There’s nothing else like it,” said Briana Kohlbrenner, co-organizer. “People feel engaged in making things happen in the area.”
Because the event on May 1 is taking place in the same space as the last sold-out event and capacity is 130 people, get your tickets early. Tickets will go on sale mid-April at Craft Chemistry, 745 N. Salina St.; Second Story Bookstore, 550 Westcott St.; and Sound Garden, 310 W. Jefferson St. The price is a sliding scale of $10 to $20.
“It’s nice the event is kept intimate. You feel like you could talk to every person,” Panova said. “It’s amazing to see the people in conversation and enjoying a meal together. The amazing thing is realizing it’s a Sunday dinner we’re all sharing together. Collecting the energy our city has in one location is inspiring.”
If Dishes inspires you but you can’t participate in this spring round, not to fear: Dishes will be back for a summer session as well. “We’re thinking about doing something creative and outside the box in the summer,” Kohlbrenner noted. “We’re going to do something outdoors.”
But for now, get your proposals in. “I really encourage people to give it a shot,” Somerstein said. “Especially if there’s lots of people out there who think, ‘Oh I would never, it’s never the right time to start something new.’ But it’s also never the wrong time to start something new!” The exact requirements for the Salt City Dishes proposal can be found at www. saltcitydishes.blogspot.com or www.facebook. com/saltcitydishes.
(pictured above) Briana Kohlbrenner channels her arts-and-crafts expertise into the second round of Dishes competition. MD PHOTO