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'FaceAge' Receives Grant to Fund National, International Tour

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The FaceAge project is one of several initiatives to receive a grant in a new University-wide program launched by the Penn State Bookstore, managed by Barnes & Noble. The $45,000 grant for FaceAge will support touring of the video installation to state, national, and international venues over the next three years.

FaceAge, a collaboration among the colleges of Arts and Architecture, Health and Human Development, and Nursing, is an immersive three-screen video installation featuring cross-generational encounters. After a successful world premiere in the HUB-Robeson Center in fall 2016, the project team plans to extend FaceAge’s reach through presentations at Penn State Commonwealth Campuses during 2017­–18, and then national and international venues in 2018–20.

“This generous Barnes and Noble support will significantly extend FaceAge’s reach into a broad range of communities, starting with Penn State Commonwealth Campuses,” said Andrew Belser, director of FaceAge, professor of theatre, and director of the Arts & Design Research Incubator (ADRI) in the College of Arts and Architecture. “This funding also allows us to design and implement the important community engagement, research, and curriculum components that will accompany the film-base exhibit on its tour.”

The Penn State Bookstore grant program will award $825,000 to the Penn State community over the next five years, and is part of a $1.25 million philanthropic commitment from the bookstore. “Through this grant program, we hope to deepen our partnership with the University and extend our commitment to the students and faculty we serve everyday,” said Steve Falke, regional director of the Penn State Bookstores. Other recipients include the Four Diamonds Fund, the Faculty/Staff Forum, and the Library Enrichment Fund.

The Penn State tour of FaceAge will serve both students and surrounding communities, and will include community engagement, research, and curricular components focused on the needs of each locale.

The national and international tour of FaceAge will include visits to universities, the Library of Congress, film festivals, and health care and research centers. In addition, FaceAge will be exhibited at the IAGG World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics this summer in San Francisco, and has attracted interest from museums in the United Kingdom and Europe. Funds will support faculty/graduate student travel to these locations for planning and touring.

The grant will also support the development of a smaller LED screen version of the FaceAge installation for a rotating residence through Penn State University Park colleges and centers, and the Penn State Hershey Medical Center/College of Medicine.

ADRI is FaceAge’s lead partner. The Center for Healthy Aging in the College of Health and Human Development is the lead community engagement partner, extending the project into the local community, and the College of Nursing is the lead research partner investigating the project as a template for multi-disciplinary work on health concerns.

“This generous funding from Barnes and Noble arrives at an ideal moment when FaceAge is about to break into wider statewide, national, and international prominence. At a time when our culture needs the binding power of human connection, we believe FaceAge’s intergenerational engagement has big work to do in many communities,” said Belser. “The FaceAge team is deeply grateful for this support.”

For more information on FaceAge, visit For the full story on the first Penn State Bookstore grant recipients, visit