Express Newark Announces Newest Third Space Resident Partner

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Back row (l-r): Michelle Andrews-White, Jameel Moore, Tanika Green Front row (l-r): Michael De'Von, Margie Mia X Johnson, Rah'Sheedah Nicole Not shown: James Hall, Arthur Thorton, Fiona A. Best

Newark, NJ -- After reviewing six compelling applications, Express Newark has selected Artistic Passion and Purpose as its next Third Space Resident partner, effective as soon as renovation of the space is complete. Artistic Passion and Purpose promotes the development of creative enterprise and self-representation through unique and eclectic forms and media. Under the leadership of celebrity hairstylist Michael De’Von, the Newark-based entity will use workshops, tutorials, panel discussions, exhibitions, demonstrations, and other events to help individuals construct their identities through music, fashion, cosmetology, dance, health and wellness, and physical fitness.
As the Third Space Resident partner, Artistic Passion and Purpose will be housed in approximately 800 square feet of space at Express Newark in the Hahne & Co. building in Downtown Newark and afforded the following resources and amenities:

  • operating funds and project support of up to $30,000;
  • rent-free space that includes utilities, security, and technical and custodial support;
  • branding and marketing assistance;
  • business development and coaching ;
  • professional development and mentoring;
  • access to Rutgers University–Newark and City of Newark communities; and
  • a one-year renewable residency.

In addition to De’Von, the Artistic Passion and Purpose operating team will include Assistant Director Margie Johnson, makeup artist Tanika Green, platform artist Rah’Sheeda Nicole, sewer/tailor Jameel Moore, vocalist James Hall, Zumba/fitness instructor Michelle Andrews-White, and dance instructors Arthur Thorton and Fiona A. Best.
A three-member Third Space Residency Selection Committee oversaw the request for proposal process and ultimately whittled the pool of eligible candidates to three finalists: Artistic Passion and Purpose, Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company, and Newark Science and Sustainability. (Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company and Newark Science and Sustainability will be afforded the services and amenities of Express Newark as non-resident partners.) The selection committee consisted of Jeremy Johnson, executive director of Newark Arts; Sonnet Takahisa, deputy director of engagement and innovation at the Newark Museum; and Salamishah Tillet, Henry Rutgers Chair of African American Studies and Creative Writing, founding director of the New Arts Social Justice Initiative at Express Newark, and associate director of the Clement A. Price Institute on Ethnicity, Culture, and the Modern Experience.
Artistic Passion and Purpose succeeds, Newark Print Shop, which graduated from its Third Space Residency after a two-year term. Through its residency, Newark Print Shop was able to accommodate larger groups, host more events, and raise its visibility. With mentoring from Express Newark Co-Directors Anne Schaper Englot and Victor L. Davson, Newark Print Shop  received major operational support and mentoring in nonprofit management and organizational development, participated in a rigorous professional development training at Rutgers Business School, doubled the participation in their programs, and developed a working governing board that included members of various professional backgrounds.
“Both Victor and I are incredibly excited to welcome Artistic Passion and Purpose to the Express Newark family,” shared Englot. “They are each amazing and accomplished professionals who are eager to share their artistic talents and experience with all of Newark.  We wish the Newark Print Shop continued success and growth,” she continued. “We are confident they have acquired the appropriate tools to sustain their operations and programs.”
Express Newark (EN) is a conceptual framework and an interdisciplinary learning space where artists and community residents collaborate, experiment, and innovate in partnership with RU-N faculty, staff, and students to engage in creative practice, foster democratic dialogue, and promote positive transformation.
To learn how to get involved with EN and its many projects, contact Assistant Director Crystal Grant at or 973-353-0750.
Follow EN on Instagram (@expressnewark), Twitter (@expressnewark), and Facebook (@expressnewark).