Houston artist Rick Lowe, founder of Project Row Houses (PRH), has been named a 2014 MacArthur Fellow. The program awards unrestricted $625,000 fellowships “to talented individuals who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction.”
Initially trained as a painter, Lowe was one of the pioneers of what is now called “social practice,” among other terms. Using PRH (this year celebrating its 20th anniversary) as a model, Lowe has gone on to initiate similar projects in other cities, including “Trans.lation” in Dallas’ Vickery Meadow area. Last year, the US Senate appointed Lowe to the National Council on the Arts.
In the video below, created by the MacArthur Fellows Program, Lowe discusses PRH, social practice, and what the so-called “genius grant” means to him. “I don’t have any concrete ideas at this point about what that would mean and what would happen with it,” he says at the end, “but it’s certainly nice to have those opportunities.”