Grant #181

Sidewalk Kintsukuroi

February 22, 2016

You will never look at sidewalk cracks the same way again.

When you are walking on a sidewalk, with cracks, do you avoid them for superstitious reasons? Do you observe the beauty and abstract nature of the cracks? Do you even notice them? Thanks to Brooklyn contemporary artist Rachel Sussman, you will never look at sidewalk cracks the same way again. Rachel’s new project, “Sidewalk Kintsukuroi,” expands on the traditional Japanese art of Kintsukuroi and brings some loving attention to cracks, margins, connections, and repairs. Kintsukuroi, which means “to repair with gold,” is traditionally performed on ceramics, but Rachel is taking it to the streets. Literally.

Rachel – a Guggenheim, NYFA and MacDowell Colony Fellow, and current SETI Artist in Residence – is giving sidewalk cracks a “golden repair.” She is turning something broken into something more beautiful — a poetic take on healing and celebrating the beauty in our flaws. Her aim is to create something beautiful that connects with the nature of change in the natural and human-structured world, and also resonates with personal repair we all undertake on ourselves from time to time.

Our AWB grant will be put towards Rachel’s first site-specific installation of Sidewalk Kintsukuroi at MASS MoCA this spring, as part of a new exhibition entitled “The Space Between.” She will be “repairing” the cracks in the outdoor museum courtyard with various resins and gold pigments. The exhibition opens on April 16, 2016. Don’t miss this!

To learn more about Rachel (did we mention she is also a New York Times bestselling author, and past TED speaker?), visit her website and connect with her on Twitter and Instagram.

Category: Art, Design, Nature



After 11+ years, we’re signing off and closing applications for good. We’ve supported 571 projects with $571,000 in grant dollars. We’re so proud to have celebrated such incredible work. Please visit for more information on other AWESOME chapters! And thanks for sharing so much awesomeness with us.

Team Awesome Without Borders