Since early March, BRIC has actively monitored the evolving situation regarding the novel Coronavirus/COVID-19. We took immediate and decisive steps to protect our staff and broader community. We began by modifying our calendar of upcoming events and the operating hours of our Community Media Center, but as this unprecedented situation grew worse, we made the difficult decision to close BRIC House to the public and cancel all in-person programs through March, then through April, and now through the summer. For the safety of our community and our workforce we will not be hosting public events for now, but our essential workforce is beginning to come back as we work on re-opening plans.
As we move through these changes and look forward to the day that we can all be together again, we have worked hard to continue to bring art, music, and entertainment to our community in your homes. We've highlighted past performances from our archive, BRIC TV, and BRIC Radio programs, which are streamed across several platforms. We've launched #BRICxHome, a virtual programming series including artist interviews, musical performances, dance parties, and more on Instagram Live, IGTV, Zoom, and Facebook Live. We brought our Community Media Center online with a broad range of virtual classes and created #BRICLabxHome to turn our performing artist residencies virtual. We've brought our Contemporary Art exhibitions online with our inaugural virtual exhibition, Joey De Jesus: HOAX, and have begun public art initiatives that can be safely viewed outdoors. We were thrilled to bring our beloved BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival to your home with our first ever multiplatform music festival, Live Everywhere, which you can now stream on demand. We are working hard to continue supporting our community of artists and to bring our audience a full program of events.
BRIC needs the support of our community now, more than ever. In late March we launched the BRIC Creative Future Relief Fund to support our mission to Build Brooklyn’s Creative Future, with a goal of $1M. BRIC’s creative workforce is the lifeblood of our organization and represents a significant segment of Brooklyn’s creative economy. BRIC employs 100 full-time, 160 part-time, and 200 seasonal staff. In addition, our freelance artistic workforce consists of 35 teaching artists, 500 independent producers, and over 350 performing and visual artists whose work is featured on BRIC’s stages, channels, and gallery walls. This fund will help alleviate the anticipated economic impact on BRIC, our programs, and our dedicated creative workforce who are the heart and soul of our vibrant organization and help us reopen our doors.
BRIC's COVID-19 Timeline:
March 10: We modified our schedules and calendar of events.
March 13: We postponed our media education classes through March 31, both at BRIC House and Brooklyn Public Libraries. We shared a list of resources for artists during a public health crisis from local and national arts and culture organizations, which we have continually updated as we learn of more resources.
March 16: BRIC House closed to the public through March 31.
March 17: We closed BRIC House through April 30 and asked for support from our community.
March 18: We created and shared a playlist of past performances at BRIC House and the BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival. We postponed the B Free Awards and canceled all equipment and studio checkouts and reservations at BRIC and New Lots Library.
March 22: We launched the BRIC Creative Future Relief Fund with a goal of $1M, to help alleviate the anticipated economic impact on BRIC, our programs, and our dedicated creative workforce.
March 23: We launched #BRICxHome, BRIC's virtual programming initiative.
March 27: We began offering online learning courses through our media center.
March 30: We introduced Tasks for Social Nearing with the Future Historical Society.
March 31: We shared a list of resources available in our immediate BRIC House neighborhoods of Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, and Downtown Brooklyn, which we have continually updated as we learn of more resources.
April 1: We began hosting weekly Community Media virtual gatherings every Thursday at 1PM.
April 8: We canceled in-person events and closed our physical spaces through May 31.
April 9: Brooklyn Free Speech TV invited our community to share their social distancing story, words of inspiration, DIY tutorials, crafting fun for kids, wellness and fitness videos, and homemade concerts on Brooklyn Free Speech TV.
April 18: We announced that we would not gather at the Prospect Park Bandshell for the BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival.
April 21: We shared tips and tricks for making a personal cloth face covering.
May 2: We shared a series of Family Art-Making Videos.
May 12: We launched our inaugural Contemporary Art virtual exhibition, Joey De Jesus: HOAX.
May 26: We announced we will be closed through the end of June.
May 28: We celebrated young media makers with a virtual edition of our Concrete Stories: BRIC Youth Media Festival.
June 3: We launched our inaugural Youth Curatorial Fellowship exhibition, Make This Accessible, as a virtual viewing experience.
June 22: We launched a three-hour weekday broadcast of educational content created by Brooklyn teachers, principals, and educators in partnership with the DOE.
June 30: For the safety of our community and our workforce we made the decision to not host public events for now, but our essential workforce is beginning to come back as we work on re-opening plans.
July 25-26: We celebrated our inaugural multiplatform music festival, with the two-day interactive event BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival: Live Everywhere.