In light of recent initiative proposals and an unveiled strategy to create additional infrastructure to support arts programming, Princeton University President Shirley Tilghman will receive the Arts Council of Princeton's new Arts Vision Award at the Dining by Design Gala Fund-raiser on October 28.
The award, which is to be given annually, is handed to an "individual who has shown exceptional leadership and vision for the arts in the Princeton community," said Arts Council executive director Jeff Nathanson. At last year's Dining by Design gala, the Arts Council honored its own founding director Anne Reeves, which, according to Mr. Nathanson, proved to be the impetus for the award.
Specifically, Dr. Tilghman is being honored for the University's arts initiative that was unveiled in January, following a $101 million donation from auto executive and Princeton University graduate Peter Lewis. The Arts Initiative includes plans for substantially increased financial, as well as infrastructural support for creative and performing arts and the establishment of what University officials have dubbed an "arts neighborhood." One of the more notable changes in campus infrastructure is a planned realignment of University Place to have the throughway merge with Alexander Street further south, allowing for space behind McCarter and Berlind theaters to be developed.
That proposal, which is still in the conceptual phase, was mapped out in some detail in July when University officials addressed municipal officials and neighbors who would be immediately impacted by new development in that area.
Earlier this year, Princeton University administrators toured the school's master plan to Princeton Borough and Township governing bodies, as well as the Regional Planning Board, bringing in noted campus architectural and planning firm Beyer Blinder Belle to outline specific aims of the University, including the school's goal to further so-called academic neighborhoods, including the natural sciences region that straddles Washington Road, the Alexander Road area, and that within the Borough's E-3 zoning district, encompassing the University's Engineering Quadrangle and 185 Nassau Street, home to the school's creative writing, visual arts, and theater and dance programs.
This year's Dining by Design theme, "From Genomes to Private Homes," pays particular attention to the Carl Icahn Laboratory on the Princeton campus with its atrium and sculptural conference room designed by architect Frank Gehry, which Dr. Tilghman, working with architect Rafael Viñoly, helped design.
The award presentation for Dr. Tilghman will occur during a pre-dinner cocktail reception at the Icahn Laboratory scheduled from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. After that, as has been the case in previous years, guests will then go on to private homes throughout Princeton for art- and science-themed dinners hosted by leaders in the arts, sciences, and culinary fields. Tickets for the event are required.
All funds raised at Dining by Design will be dedicated to the Arts Council's Community Youth Programs that benefit area at-risk and homeless youth. For more information or to register, call (609) 924-8777, ext. 106 or visit www.artscouncilofprinceton.org.
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