Civic leaders donate to Brad Pitt’s ‘Make It Right’ project in Lower 9th Ward

Friday, May 1, 2009

More than 100 New Orleans civic activists and leaders will present $150,000 donation today to actor Brad Pitt’s Make it Right Foundation, to underwrite the building of a house in the Lower 9th Ward.

The group has also commissioned a “New Orleans Oscar” to give Pitt, along with a director’s chair. Both were created by local sculptor Luis Colmenares.

The A-list actor has been invited to the 11:30 a.m. gathering near the intersection of Tennessee and North Derbigny streets, but the group said they are unsure whether he will attend.

Presently, 25 families are either living in a home built by Pitt’s foundation, have a house under construction, or will break ground soon.

Eight local, national and international architectural firms are also working to design duplexes in the neighborhood for residents who lost their homes in Hurricane Katrina. The duplex designs will be unveiled June 20.

The firms include Bild Design, buildingstudio/Coleman Coker and Waggonner & Ball Architects of New Orleans; Gehry Partners and Kappe Architects/Planners of Los Angeles; William McDonough + Partners of Charlottesville; Atelier Hitoshi Abe of Japan; and Elemental of Chile.

Among those expected at today’s event include civic activists Beverly Reese Church and Anne Milling, architect John Williams and foundation director Tom Darden.