CBMR to Receive Grant from National Endowment for the Arts

Award is among 1,023 Made Nationally

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The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has announced that it will make a $25,000 award to support the CBMR’s commission of FREE/PHASE, the intermedia art project by Mendi and Keith Obadike. This award, together with funding from the Joyce Foundation, the Illinois Arts Council, and the Chicago Community Trust, enables the project to reach broad and diverse audiences in Chicago.

The CBMR thanks all the individuals and organizations who support its mission. To join them, please consider making a donation or becoming a member.

Press Release

Through its grant-making to thousands of
nonprofits each year, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) promotes opportunities for people in communities across America to experience the arts and exercise their creativity.

In the second major grant announcement of fiscal year 2015, the NEA will make a $25,000 award to the Center for Black Music Research to fund FREE/PHASE, an intermedia suite of sound-based public artworks by artists and composers Mendi and Keith Obadike.

The NEA will make 1,023 awards totaling $74.3 million nationwide in this funding round. NEA Chairman Jane Chu said, “The NEA is committed to advancing learning, fueling creativity, and celebrating the arts in cities and towns across the United States. Funding these new projects like the one from the CBMR represents an investment in both local communities and our nation’s creative vitality.”

According to CBMR Executive Director Monica Hairston O’Connell, “the NEA continues to be an essential champion of the CBMR’s work. This award will help the CBMR bring the timely insights of its commissioned project FREE/PHASE to broad and diverse audiences across Chicago.”

To join the Twitter conversation about this announcement, please use #NEASpring2015. For more information on projects included in the NEA grant announcement, go to arts.gov

Recent Articles


  • CrossTalk: Cross Talk is a student-driven, multimedia destination dedicated to original student work that explores the sound-music continuum of the African Diaspora.
  • Depth Sounding: A platform for short-form scholarship intended for a wide audience, Depth Sounding is a space for up-to-the-minute thought in which authors can experiment with format, media, content, argument construction, and more, in ways that privilege or more fully integrate sound.
  • Free/Phase: Follow the FREE/PHASE suite of sound-based art works by artists Mendi+Keith Obadike, commissioned by the CBMR.
  • From the Stacks: Reviews and reactions to lucky “finds” and new additions within the CBMR Library and Archives–updated as serendipity leads. Contributors: staff, student workers, students, interns, patrons.
  • News: Events, notices, reviews–things that are timely.
  • Publications: All the in-house publications of the CBMR, past and present plus planned, except for the monographs and the BMRJ, which are available elsewhere. Ask us!