BENEFITING: LE MONDO
Le Mondo is an artist-owned-and-driven initiative to position Baltimore as a center for theatre and the live arts, nationally and internationally. Comprised of buildings on Baltimore’s historic Howard Street (408-414 block) corridor, the project will champion a diverse community of arts organizations, individual artists, curators, and arts-lovers in the city.
We are raising $75,000 by December 31,2015 to gain site control, facilitate development, and begin renovations on these sites as soon as possible. We raised $50,000 in June thanks to the generous contributions of almost 200 donors.
What We Are Doing!
Upon completion, Le Mondo will provide a cultural hub with a robust mix of both daytime and nighttime activity: flexible performance venues, rehearsal and shop facilities, and a cafe with 16,000 square feet of opportunity office, studio, and artist live/work opportunities on the second and third floors.
Why We Are Doing It!
Le Mondo addresses a growing need for truly affordable and sustainable space for artists and small arts organizations in Baltimore through artist-ownership and community-led development. The creative class has widely been recognized and exploited as an agent of increasing property value, branding neighborhoods and triggering gentrification. Arts districts pop up with no artist-owned or controlled spaces, taking the direction and definition of the art out of the hands of the artists. Meanwhile there is no security, no sustainability, no leverage in the very spaces artists live and work in. Real estate is not supposed to be for artists themselves.
This is a chance to change that in downtown Baltimore.
Le Mondo creates a safe and enduring home for the appreciation and incubation of new, daring work in the city while bringing new life to a once-thriving corridor in the city.
About Our Neighborhood
Once the center of Baltimore’s commercial district and the home to a range of vaudeville and touring performance houses, the Howard Street corridor has suffered neglect and deinvestment for decades.
The Westside neighborhood is now part of the Bromo Arts District. This arts district is home to over 25 cultural organizations producing and showcasing a diverse range of artistic disciplines. The area’s official state designation as an arts & entertainment district provides incentives to artists and arts organizations to locate within its boundaries, and offers additional resources and capacity for the neighborhood’s cultural community.
Le Mondo now joins this hive of arts activity downtown alongside organizations such as Current Gallery, Eubie Blake Cultural Center, DCAC, MAP, Everyman Theatre, 14K Cabaret, Platform Arts, Springsteen Gallery, Whole Gallery, Gallery 4, Muse 360, Psychic Readings, Annex Theater, EMP Collective, Arena Players, Open Space, Fifth Dimension, and several other artist-run spaces who call the neighborhood home.
Who We Are!
Carly J Bales
Board of Directors
Carly J Bales
Baltimore Youth Arts, Annex Theater, EMP Collective, Psychic Readings, Acme Corporation, Stillpointe Theatre Initiative, Effervescent Collective, and the larger performance community
Help Build Le Mondo!
Embracing an organic, grassroots approach to developing the project, Le Mondo will unfold in phases over five years. In order to begin to activate the space as soon as possible, the Le Mondo team is raising funds to stabilize all the buildings and occupy the first of the planned performance spaces.
We are raising $75,000 through an individual donor crowdsourced campaign by December 31, 2015. This benchmark allows the team to gain site control of the three currently city-owned properties, continue developing them, and kickstarts its needed renovations.
Video by Rachel Dwiggins. Music by Wume (courtesy of EHSE Records)
LE MONDO PERKS: Be one of the first 80 people to either donate at least $500 or raise at least $1000 you'll win a Full Festival Pass to Mondo Festo, a two-night event celebrating experimental performance in Baltimore on August 21 and 22.