Combining both a love of the creative enterprise, with the skill of project management and fundraising, Site-specific contemporary art happenings can engage new audiences, increase awareness and enrich an existing historic narrative. Experimenting with this process since the late 1990’s, Vagnone has collaborated with artists, curators, non-profit organizations to help produce highly successful interjections into historic sites. A thought leader on these types of happenings, Vagnone consults and speaks internationally on the power of such creative place making efforts.
Historic House Trust of New York City:
In 2010, under Vagnone’s leadership, The Historic House Trust of New York City created the new organization-wide Contemporary Art Partnerships (Caroline Drabik-Director of Curatorial Affairs). This program assisted the 23 historic house sites in facilitating innovative contemporary art happenings. An important aspect of this program is that the art happenings are dove tailed with other organizational programs to serve multiple new communities. For instance some of these happenings involved special needs/Autistic children, ASL users, and visually reduced communities. A conscious effort was placed on extending the happenings far off site and into the established communities.
Caroline Drabik-Director of Curatorial Affairs, Kim Maier-ED of Old Stone House, Carol Ward-ED of Morris Jumel Mansion, Ed Wiseman-ED of Historic Richmond Town, Meredith Horsford-ED of Dyckman Farmhouse Museum, Monica Montgomery-ED Latimer House, Ellen Bruzallieus-ED Bartow Pell Mansion,
Philadelphia Society for the Preservation of Landmarks:
In 2006 Vagnone established an overall concept of facilitating site-specific contemporary art happenings in the historic sites. These ground-breaking projects, Curated by Robert Wulfi & Michele Wilson, ranged from simple interjections within the historic spaces to fully immersive theater, dance and film happenings. In addition, there was a strong concentration on facilitating consistent, unique avant guard music and sound situations through Bowerbird.
Robert Wulfi – Curator, Michelle Wilson – Curator