Durham 150 Grantee
As a place of inspiration and for resources, the Scrap Exchange (SE) has provided a home for artists since it inception. One of the beliefs of SE is â€œwe are all artistsâ€. working, inspiring and germinating artists are part of the fabric of the work at SE. within the walls of SE there is a thriving community of makers and artists who gather for regular meet-ups, take classes and acquire items to use in creative ways. The Cameron gallery hosts eleven shows per year to highlight artists who embrace reuse as a part of the artistic process. it was difficult to categorize SE for this proposal. SE is often associated with the visual arts but performing artists come to find materials for shows, filmmakers have created works on our premises and used our materials for props. Creative reuse is inspiring to many art forms.
In the last two years SE has grown dramatically. prior to the move to Lakewood in 2014, the Lakewood shopping center and surrounding area had struggled for years, a forgotten neighborhood viewed as too dangerous for developers to consider rehabbing. the scrap exchange (SE) endeavors to provide not only employment but workforce development opportunities to many different segments of the local population. In addition our customers often reside in the neighborhood. in addition to employment we want to offer Lakewood as a gathering spot for Durham to celebrate innovation and creativity. Our community events are central to this part of our mission and work.
The leadership is moving forward with the vision for the reuse arts district (rad). Ultimately this will be a multi-faceted cultural, environmental, historical, recreational, and community-based destination. With the scrap exchange is at its core. Rad will transform Durham’s developing Lakewood neighborhood and offers a place for entrepreneurs to find an affordable spot to grown their business. Reuse arts programs will enliven a space that will offer amenities such as community gardens, a sculpture park, and outdoor recreation.