01.02.20 — The Kresge Foundation has awarded a renewal grant of $250,000 to Northeastern University School of Law’s NuLawLab to provide ongoing support for Stable Ground, a collaboration among three organizations: NuLawLab, which leads the project and has engaged arts-based disciplines since 2013 to imagine and realize new models of legal empowerment; the City of Boston’s Office of Housing Stability, which works to prevent displacement and promote housing preservation and stabilization; and Violence Transformed, which fosters creative action to overcome violence and extends trauma-informed training to community-based groups.

The Kresge Foundation made an initial grant of $200,000 to the NuLawLab in 2017. This renewal award will enable the NuLawLab and its community and municipal partners to continue to address the complex relationship among chronic housing insecurity, its psychologically traumatic impact, and municipal housing policy through participatory community-based art and culture programming. The evaluation report for the first iteration of Stable Ground is available here.

“We are honored to continue this partnership with The Kresge Foundation and our community and municipal partners. Our work to date confirms that much can be gained through the creative process and its outcomes,” said NuLawLab Executive Director Dan Jackson. “This next iteration of Stable Ground will continue to develop knowledge that will inform cutting-edge policy and program development, all centered on addressing the unique attributes of the trauma that comes from housing insecurity. We believe in the power of the creative process to inform and directly influence policy."

Collaborations with local artists are central to Stable Ground. This coming year, through Stable Ground, the NuLawLab is engaged with three Artists in Residence (AIR), a Community Storytelling Curator, and is expanding its work with local artist, organizer, and educator Anthony Romero. The Stable Ground AIR program creates an opportunity for visual and performing artists to develop their social-based artistic practice to become engaged in a thoughtful, facilitated dialogue with community members about the personal impact that housing insecurity has on Boston’s residents.

The 2020 Stable Ground Artists in Residence are:

Ngoc-Tran Vu, a Vietnamese American multimedia and transnational artist whose practice draws from her experience as a community organizer and healer. She was born in Vietnam and grew up in Dorchester, Massachusetts, where she’s currently based. Tran is involved with the resident-led group Dorchester Not For Sale, where she actively fights for development without displacement in her community. For more information, visit Tran’s website.

L’Merchie Fraser, a public fiber artist, innovator, poet and holographer, who is director of education and interpretation for the Museum of African American History, Boston/Nantucket. She has been engaged in highlighting and curating the museum’s collection/exhibits, in providing place-based education and interdisciplinary history programs, projects and lectures, most recently promoting STEM/STEAM education pedagogy, and in managing the successful Faculty/Teachers’ Institutes and its extension, The Cross-Cultural Classroom, a benefit marketed to independent education entities, municipalities and corporations. She is an adjunct faculty member at Pine Manor College and Bunker Hill Community Colleges. She has served the artistic community for over 20 years as an award-winning national and international visual and performance artist and poet, with residencies in Brazil, Taiwan, Africa, France and Cuba. As a lecturer and workshop presenter. Her audiences include youth and adults. She is a former board member of City Life/Vida Urbana, is on the advisory board of Paige Academy, and is an Art Commons Boston AppLab board member. She currently serves as Violence Transformed’s director of creative engagement.

Hakim Raquib has owned and operated Hakim Photography Studio for the past 38 years in Boston. His featured images have been highlighted and shown in exhibitions, billboards, catalogs, advertisements and other publications for four decades. Notable clients include Polaroid Corporation, Xerox, The Boston Globe’s Globe Magazine, The Travel Magazine, The Bay State Banner, Museum of the National Center for Afro-American Artists, Museum of Fine Arts, Urban Arts Institute of Massachusetts College of Arts, WGBH Boston, Oxfam America, Partners HealthCare, Northeastern University and Boston University. In addition to his photographic work, Raquib has served as an educational consultant for Urban Arts Inc., Wentworth Institute of Technology and New Mission High School. In collaboration with these organizations, Raquib developed workshops that instructed inner-city high school students in the media arts.

In addition to the AIR program, during the 2020 season, NuLawLab Creative Director Jules Rochielle Sievert will collaborate with local artist and curator Glorettta Baynes to organize and curate Stories We Want to Tell, a Stable Ground storytelling project about displacement, resistance and hope. Baynes, a Cambridge native and alumna of Massachusetts College of Art, is an independent curator and cultural consultant, and the former assistant director and registrar for the Museum of the National Center of Afro American artists. She is the former chair for the Registrars Committee of the Association of African American Museums, and is an exhibition designer for Community Creations, an annual exhibition hosted by the Gardner Museum.

Stable Ground 2020 Events

Stable GroundInstitute of Contemporary Art: Saturday, January 11, 2020
The NuLawLab kicks off formal programming with the Stable Ground: Anti-Displacement Lab at the ICA. This effort is one part of the lab’s long-term engagement with Boston-based artist, organizer and educator Anthony Romero and Northeastern University’s Archives and Special Collections. Romero’s work, …first in thought, then in action, to which the NuLawLab and Northeastern Law students contributed, is part of the ICA’s current exhibition, When Home Won’t Let you Stay: Migration through Contemporary Art.

For more information about Stable Ground, visit www.stablegroundboston.org, follow @StableGroundBos on Twitter, or contact j.sievert@northeastern.edu.

About Northeastern University School of Law

The nation’s leader in experiential legal education since 1968, Northeastern University School of Law offers the longest-running, most extensive experience-based legal education program in the country and is a national leader in legal education reform. Founded with cooperative legal education as the cornerstone of its program, Northeastern guarantees its students unparalleled practical legal work experiences. All students participate in full-time legal placements, and can choose from the more than 1,500 employers worldwide participating in the school’s signature Cooperative Legal Education Program. The future of legal education since 1968, Northeastern University School of Law blends theory and practice, providing students with a unique set of skills and experience to successfully practice law.

For more information, contact d.feldman@northeastern.edu.