What’s New: Art Beat

SpaceusPhoto courtesy of Spaceus.

Houghton Library Gets a Facelift

Harvard’s Houghton Library celebrated its 75th birthday last year, but new renovation plans will make sure the library doesn’t show its age. The renovation, scheduled for September 2019 to September 2020, will update the library’s research and teaching facilities, grow its exhibition space, and make it more welcoming and accessible, the Harvard Gazette reports. Library staff say they hope the renovation will inspire greater interest in the library’s collections and staff of experts from scholars worldwide. 

Arts Task Force Aims to Increase Arts Funding

City Councilor Alanna Mallon has plans to increase the city’s art funding, the Cambridge Day reports. Mallon, who leads the new Mayor’s Arts Task Force, proposed three ideas, all co-sponsored by Mayor Marc McGovern. First, she called for allocating at least 15 percent of the city’s hotel and motel tax revenue and three percent of recreational marijuana tax revenue to the arts. She also proposed updating the city’s percent-for-art ordinance, which could bring in increased revenue from construction projects. Finally, Mallon suggested setting up a Central Square Improvement Fund, which would supplement the $4,500 in funding that the state contributes to the arts district. 

Spaceus Leaves East Cambridge

Spaceus, a “hybrid workspace, event space, and gallery,” opened its fourth pop-up location in East Cambridge earlier this year and then moved out in March, according to press releases. The startup, which previously had stints in vacant spaces in Faneuil Hall, Roslindale, and Harvard Square, offers visitors a chance to interact with local artists, purchase their art, and participate in workshops and events. “We see vacant storefronts as underutilized assets,” Stephanie Lee, co-founder of Spaceus said in a release. “We’ve seen that they can be transformed into places for communities to form and for artists to make within the heart of the city.”

This story originally appeared in the What’s New section of the Environmental Issue of Scout Cambridge, which is available for free at more than 200 locations throughout the city or by subscription.

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