In February of this year, we were at full tilt production for the second year of The Baltimore Mixtape, a music and arts festival with 30 performing artists booked and $3,500 granted from the Maryland State Arts Council. Then Covid-19 happened. In reconceptualizing the Mixtape, we propose a new kind of a work: a visual album featuring all Baltimore artists. This multimedia project will pair 10 filmmakers with 10 musical artists to construct 1 cohesive mixtape, the way you would for a high school crush. The mixtape is a unique form that deserves greater exploration in contemporary art, while the visual album is hyper-contemporary. This project will combine them.
In a time when the arts, particularly music, have been rendered invisible, this project presents our Baltimore DIY community in full, strange, and unexpected splendor. Picture this: a time-lapse of a bike rider tracing their name on a map to the tune of Baby Kahlo’s hottest club beat. Hunter Hooligan decked out in his finest attire walks the entire length of Lovegrove Alley in a glorious, one person Ball. 3LON croons to full light show and an audience of none at the Clifton Park bandshell. Who is it for? It is for you, our city.
We are in the process of assembling an emphatically diverse team to create the filmed content. The final cut of the film will be produced by filmmaker Rachel Dwiggins, serving as production manager working in close collaboration with an audio producer. It is through these layers of collaboration that we celebrate both what makes Baltimore artists unique as well as what makes this community powerful. We have years of experience in navigating commissions and payment while respecting artists’ work, and this grant is one step in making that possible.
Mixtape: The Movie (working title) will be released in a live online premier/listening party with a suggested donation. Perks, available to supporters, will include the real, limited-edition audio tape.
Funded by Baltimore, MD (October 2020)