Kerouac@100 Request for Project Proposals

The Jack Kerouac Centennial in Lowell, Massachusetts

Spring 2022

Proposal Due Date: April 21, 2021

In 2022, the city of Lowell, Massachusetts, will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of Jack Kerouac — Lowell native and internationally recognized author of On the Road and many other works of fiction, poetry, and visual arts.  As part of the Kerouac Centennial, the Kerouac Center at UMass Lowell seeks to team with and provide support to local artists, educators, writers, students, and community organizations. The Kerouac Center requests proposals for innovative, participatory projects that will engage a broad, diverse public in Lowell and the Merrimack Valley region with the work of Kerouac. 

Such projects might take as inspiration Kerouac’s reflections and reveries on creativity. In “Belief & Technique for Modern Prose” and “Essentials of Spontaneous Prose,” he wrote out a list of inspirational prompts and aesthetic counsels: for instance, “Something that you feel will find its own form”; “Keep track of every day the date emblazoned in yr morning”; and “If possible write ‘without consciousness’ in semi-trance.” He contemplates creativity throughout his published writings and journals, and a handful of the many examples are available here:

https://www.writing.upenn.edu/~afilreis/88/kerouac-spontaneous.html
https://www.writing.upenn.edu/~afilreis/88/kerouac-technique.html

Projects might also work closely with the UMass Lowell Kerouac Archive, the most comprehensive collection of Kerouac-related material in the world. A searchable overview of the archive is available at www.jackkerouac.org. The Kerouac Center at UMass Lowell can also provide further assistance with connecting projects to the archive’s holdings.

Kerouac was inspired by Lowell in novel after novel. We seek projects of all sorts which will encourage Lowell to be inspired by Kerouac.

Proposals might seek support for: 

Individual artistic works and their display to the public

Public arts projects, exhibits, and performances

Pedagogical and classroom projects with students and the public

Musical compositions and performances

Online projects about Kerouac in Lowell and related subjects

Readings and lectures

Poetry and fiction writing competitions

Historical and heritage projects (walking tours, commemorations, etc)  

The Kerouac Center will consider projects ranging to $5000.

All projects must be completed and presented between January 1, 2022 and May 15, 2022. Kerouac was born on March 12, 1922.

Proposals should be approximately 500 words and include a budget, a clear description of the project, a description of the organization or person proposing the project (including qualifications for such a project), a plan for publicity and diversity of audience, and any other special considerations. 

Proposals are due on April 21, 2021, 11:59pm (EST). Final decisions on accepted proposals and funding will be made by May 21, 2021 by the Kerouac Center.

Proposals may be submitted to Professor Michael Millner, Director, UMass Lowell Kerouac Center, michael_millner@uml.edu

Receipt of all proposal will be recognized. The Kerouac Center may request further information and details about proposals once they are submitted.

In order to answer questions and provide guidance, the UML Kerouac Center will hold two virtual discussions of this Request for Proposals: 

Monday, March 1, 7:30-8:30pm (EST)

Tuesday, March 30, 7:30-8:30pm (EST)

at

https://uml.zoom.us/j/96576328370

Meeting ID: 965 7632 8370

+16468769923 96576328370#

Please direct any questions about this RFP to michael_millner@uml.edu.

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