Forest Park Forever Announces Selected Artists for its First-Ever Artist in Residence Program in Forest Park

This program celebrates Forest Park Forever’s 30th anniversary through the creative output of talented artists

Katy Peace, Marketing & Digital Media Manager | | 314.561.3290

ST. LOUIS, April 25, 2016 – After launching an open call for artists of all disciplines, an esteemed jury has selected three artists/collectives to participate in the brand new Forest Park Forever Artist in Residence Program. Forest Park Forever received 117 applications from artists all over the country, with three St. Louis-based artists coming out on top. Forest Park Forever is excited to announce that Danielle & Kevin McCoy (WORK/PLAY)The 442s and Madeline Marak will be this year’s artists in residence. The three selected artists, whose paid residencies are funded by Forest Park Forever, will be bringing very different projects to life over the coming months:

  • WORK/PLAY’s project will focus on repurposing discarded plant materials into natural dyes for a textile piece that represents a topographical view of Forest Park.
    • Tentative dates: May 2-22
  • The 442s will create a new musical composition with the help of a donated piano and willing Park visitors and participants.
    • Tentative dates: June 6-26
  • Madeline Marak will draw attention to a tucked-away corner of the Park through the temporary installation of simple metal frames placed by members of the public.
    • Tentative dates: September 4-24

More information will be released in the coming weeks, including timelines for each residency and details about free public programs associated with each project. Visit for the latest details.

“It has been truly inspiring to see artists from all over the country present proposals about what Forest Park means to their creative practices,” said Stephen Schenkenberg, Strategic Communications Director for Forest Park Forever. “We are grateful to our five jury members for approaching their task with such enthusiasm and care. From more than 115 proposals, they selected three of great range and originality. We can’t wait for the artists to get started here in Forest Park and ultimately provide our entire community with new ways to experience the region’s greatest civic treasure.” 

“We have always been drawn to Forest Park,” said WORK/PLAY’s Danielle McCoy. “The joy and serenity the Park brings to us and others in the St. Louis area affirm the significance of this opportunity. We are excited to bring an engaging project that blends our contemporary design aesthetic with the vision of horticulturists, the public and the Forest Park team.”

Artist Bios

WORK/PLAY (Danielle & Kevin McCoy)
WORK/PLAY is a multidisciplinary design duo based in St. Louis. Kevin is an alumnus of the University of Missouri St. Louis where he earned a BFA in Graphic Communication. Danielle attended Webster University where she studied International Relations. The two often use illustration and minimalist design, along with experimental printmaking practices, to create works that disseminate a message, spark dialogue and inspire an audience. Their expansive printmaking practice not only includes 2-dimensional design, but also product design that makes use of various textile techniques to create 3-dimensional surfaces. WORK/PLAY has shown their work at the Mark Miller Gallery in New York, The Sheldon Galleries in St. Louis and a host of other local galleries in the St. Louis metropolitan area. WORK/PLAY has designed and partnered with AIGA St. Louis, Knife & Flag and Glaceau VitaminWater to name a few. They continuously experiment with new techniques, seeking to push beyond the perceived boundaries of art, design and printmaking.

The 442s
What happens when you combine two outstanding members of the world-class St. Louis Symphony with two of the city’s finest jazz musicians? You get The 442s, a genre-defying acoustic quartet named for the modern standard tuning of 442 Hz! Brought together by the innovative and inspired compositions of Adam Maness, who plays piano, guitar, accordion, melodica and glockenspiel in the group, The 442s features Shawn Weil on violin, Bjorn Ranheim on cello and Sydney Rodway on bass. For the Forest Park Forever residency, they will be joined by percussionist and frequent collaborator Montez Coleman. This unique collaboration, formed in the Spring of 2012, combines outstanding musicianship, group singing and inventive improvisation, all while breaking down barriers between jazz, classical, folk and pop music. The 442s were born of a common musical inquisitiveness and a search for new and exciting musical possibilities and collaborations. This search has taken them to venues and concert series throughout the Midwest, including Powell Symphony Hall and Jazz at the Bistro. The 442s self-titled debut album was released in 2014 and has been featured on hundreds of radio stations across the country. Their next album, Relay, was recorded at Powell Symphony Hall and Shock City Studios and will be released in June 2016.

Madeline Marak
Madeline Marak is a 2016 Master of Fine Arts candidate in the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana in 2013. Her hometown of Shreveport, Louisiana, is the birthplace of her creative pursuits. Marak’s practice is an investigation of the experience of overlooked spaces where the built environment and natural environment are interwoven. Her work in the studio consists of arrangements of photographs and paintings. Her public sculpture work are structures that frame the space they are within, bringing attention to unnoticed outdoor spaces. The Forest Park Forever Artist in Residence Program will be Marak’s third public art project in St. Louis.

Proposals were reviewed and the artists selected by this volunteer panel of respected arts and community professionals:

  • David Allen, director of Arts in Transit, Bi-State Development
  • Jessica Baran, director, fort gondo compound for the arts; poet and critic
  • Nichole Bridges, associate curator in charge, Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas & associate curator for African Art, Saint Louis Art Museum
  • Demond Meek, photographer,
  • De Nichols, community engagement manager, Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis

The main goals of this special project are:

  • To celebrate Forest Park Forever’s 30th anniversary by bringing attention to the Park’s natural beauty, cultural and historical significance and the work of Forest Park Forever and its partnership with the City of St. Louis
  • To embrace the Park’s existing role as one of the country’s most inspiring open-air studios
  • To provide the public with a window on the process of talented regional artists and the creative possibilities of Forest Park.

About Forest Park

Forest Park in St. Louis, Missouri, is considered one of the nation’s greatest urban public parks. The Park’s 1,300 acres feature beautiful landscapes sprinkled with forests, ecosystems, nature reserves, lakes and streams, as well as five of the region’s major cultural institutions and endless opportunities for recreation. Forest Park attracts 13 million visitors each year, making it the sixth most visited urban park in the United States. In 2016, Forest Park was voted the #1 City Park in the country by readers of USA Today.

About Forest Park Forever

Founded in 1986, Forest Park Forever is a private nonprofit conservancy that works in partnership with the City of St. Louis and the Department of Parks, Recreation and Forestry to restore, maintain and sustain Forest Park as one of America’s greatest urban public parks.

Along with the City of St. Louis, Forest Park Forever raised $100 million between 1995 and 2003 and dramatically restored many landmark destinations in Forest Park, including the Emerson Grand Basin, the Boathouse and the Jewel Box. 

Today, Forest Park Forever maintains Forest Park with the City of St. Louis; raises funds for and helps manage capital restoration projects called for in the Forest Park Master Plan; delivers experiential educational opportunities to teachers, students and adults; and provides information and guides for the Park’s 13 million annual visitors. Not part of the Zoo-Museum Tax District, Forest Park Forever is supported by private donations from throughout the community, including its 7,000 members, 1,100 volunteers and many leading community and corporate partners.

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