Lauren Kennedy has been working at the Urban Art Commission (UAC) as Executive Director since January 2015. Kennedy brings to the organization extensive project and event management experience and a sincere enthusiasm for contemporary art. In this role, she has been invited to speak at WESTAF's Future History of Public Art Symposium in Honolulu, Hawai'i, ArtBAB (Art Bahrain Across Borders) in Manama, Bahrain, and UNFOLD in Dubai, UAE about public art processes and the current state of public art in America.
She was previously the Partnership Manager for Ballet Memphis, where she focused on collaborative projects and opportunities with creative individuals and other organizations around Memphis. Prior to Ballet Memphis, Kennedy was the Program Manager for the Dallas Art Fair, overseeing the various logistics of the three-day, contemporary art fair. Kennedy was also the founder and director of Southfork - Memphis, an alternative space for art and conversation from 2015 - 2017. She was a Center for Outreach in the Development of the Arts Fellow at Rhodes College where she received a Bachelor's of Art in Art History in 2008. Kennedy was named one of Memphis' 20<30 by the Memphis Flyer in 2014 for her contributions to the local creative community and a 2016 Young Cultural Innovators Fellow with Salzburg Global Seminar.
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Communications + Development mANAGER
Ebony Archie joined the UrbanArt Commission in August 2018 and is a Memphissippian who has a love for the cultural landscape of urban Southern cities. She has an extensive background in community building, fostering partnerships, and facilitating projects for non-profits across Memphis. Ebony studied History with a minor in Africana Studies at Rhodes College, which led her to fall in love with the complex narrative of Memphis and other cities likened to it. As a passionate lover of creativity, she currently curates a blog dedicated to the ways we create joy in our lives while highlighting artists across the South. She believes in the power of storytelling and looks forward to uplifting the experiences and value art has on our everyday lives.
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Brett Hanover is a filmmaker and media arts teacher from Memphis, who began working with the UrbanArt Commission in 2018. Brett brings to UAC his experience as an instructor in after-school and university art programs, and as a community media organizer, working with Kartemquin Films, Access Humboldt, and the Mozilla Youth Media Project. As a filmmaker, his work explores outsider art, neurodiversity, queer virtual communities, and the power of love. His documentaries and collaborative narrative projects have been exhibited at venues including the SXSW Film Festival, Anthology Film Archives, Indie Memphis, and the Chicago Underground Film Festival. Brett received a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and an MFA from the University of Illinois.