Americans for the Arts presents the 2010 Public Art Network (PAN) Award to community arts activist Judy Baca. The award was presented at the Americans for the Arts Half-Century Summit Public Art Preconference in Baltimore. The Public Art Network Award was created to recognize and honor innovative and creative contributions and commitment in the field of public art.
Judy Baca is the founder/artistic director of SPARC: Social & Public Art Resource Center in Los Angeles. Best known for her large-scale public organizing murals, her art involves extensive community dialogues and participation. Baca founded the first City of Los Angeles mural program in 1974 and founded SPARC in 1976. Baca’s signature piece is The Great Wall of Los Angeles, one of the city’s true cultural landmarks and one of the country’s most respected and largest monuments to interracial harmony produced with the participation with more than 400 inner-city youth, 40 ethnic historians, and hundreds of community residents.
In 1996, Baca created the UCLA/SPARC Cesar Chavez Digital/Mural Lab, a research, teaching, and production facility based at SPARC. She serves as a full professor in the UCLA Chicano Studies Department and World Arts and Cultures Department. She is currently working on the Cesar Chavez Memorial at San Jose State University; the Robert F. Kennedy monument at the Old Ambassador Hotel site, which will become the RFK Learning Center for K-12; the Martin Luther King Jr. memorial in San Diego; and a digital painted mural for the Richmond Arts Center.