ArtBridge, in collaboration with the New York Department of Cultural Affairs (DCLA) and the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), presents PRESENT POWER / FUTURE HOPES, a group exhibition showcasing works from its City installation series Artist Corps: Bridging the Divide which aims to amplify the voices of 400,000 New York public housing residents.
Co-curated by Rebecca Pristoop, ArtBridge Curator and Senior Program Manager, and ArtBridge Board Member and Artist Manjari Sharma, PRESENT POWER / FUTURE HOPES celebrates over 50 outdoor exhibitions by 59 New York-based artists across 16 complexes NYCHA in all five boroughs.
The program was supported by the City Artist Corps, launched in 2021 as a way to invest and provide relief to artists across the city and to enable them to contribute to New York City’s ongoing recovery. Installations throughout the NYCHA system are also made possible by the City Canvas initiative, which transforms sheds and fences into platforms for community-led public works of art.
The exhibition opens on July 8, 2022 at the Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural and Educational Center with a reception at 5 pm-8pm ET and will remain on display until July 23, 2022.
Highlighting selected works of art from the largest installations across the city, PRESENT POWER / FUTURE HOPES highlights the interests, talents, concerns, dreams and hopes of public housing residents, and demonstrates an expansive approach to home design. public art in relation to community reflections, stories and aspirations. While public artwork has been printed and installed on vinyl and other weather-resistant surfaces throughout the city, this exhibit includes a number of original artwork based on materials directly related to the final vinyl designs. Digital and printed reproductions of many of the public works of art are also included. Additionally, photographic documentation of site-specific installations and artist-led workshops in each NYCHA development are presented to showcase the holistic process of creating community-rooted public art.
“Bridge the Divide by ArtBridge shows cultural democracy in action, creating deep collaborations between artists and New Yorkers to explore and express what is meaningful and beautiful to them in their communities through the unparalleled power of creative expression,” he said Laurie Cumbo, New York City Commissioner for Cultural Affairs. “We are committed to investing in our cultural community and our artists as a powerful engine of recovery and recognition of their incomparable contribution to the vitality of New York City. Congratulations to every artist whose work is now installed through this exciting project, made possible by our City Canvas initiative and to every New Yorker whose vision and contribution is represented in one of these fantastic pieces. It’s a powerful reminder that when we collaborate and work to understand each other, we can do extraordinary things. “
“It has been an absolute honor to collaborate with this extraordinary group of artists and community partners. Presenting this work in a gallery at The Clemente gives us the special opportunity to explore the intricacies of each artist’s conceptual and material approach, combining their personal practices with community values and collective input, “said curator Rebecca Pristoop,” PRESENT POWER / FUTURE HOPES highlights what happens when public art programs invest resources in collaborating with local communities. We have been so inspired. overwhelming by the power of community engagement, resilience and hopes and I look forward to continuing to feature local talent in our shared urban space. “
Over the course of 10 months, ArtBridge commissioned 59 local artists through a citywide open call – many of whom have direct relationships with the sites – to create more than 50 new, original and site-specific works, and produced nearly two miles of public art, derived from hundreds of art workshops and community events with NYCHA residents in five boroughs. NYCHA partner sites include: Baruch, Polo Grounds, Taft and Lillian Wald in Manhattan; Brownsville, Howard, Ingersoll, Red Hook East and Red Hook West in Brooklyn; Adams and Mitchel in the Bronx; Astoria, Pomonok and Woodside in Queens; South Beach and Todt Hill on Staten Island. The program is made possible by the City Artist Corps and the City Canvas pilot program, initiatives of the DCLA and the Mayor’s Office.
“One of the most important elements in any successful public art program is community involvement,” said Jon Souza, Program Director at ArtBridge, “The greatest impact comes from the program’s ability to connect with local partners and ensure their voices be heard. This is why our partnership with NYCHA has been so crucial to our program: by working collaboratively, we have been able to better connect with public housing residents and community members, using art. to learn about their cultures, stories, struggles, joys, talents and more. Our program will continue to hold the space to amplify these voices through creativity and collaboration. “
“The PRESENT POWER / FUTURE HOPES group show illustrates the astounding range of artistic talent found among our public housing residents as they activate dozens of NYCHA campuses in the process,” said Joey Koch, NYCHA Chief of Staff. “This ambitious public art project would not be possible without the institutional support and artistic guidance provided by ArtBridge, the New York Department of Cultural Affairs and the Office of the Mayor, who share our commitment to strengthen the voices of our residents. through the creative expression of oneself. “
Canary Swords (Ashley Crawford and Kenneth Tooley)
Giorgio Torres Jr.
Jia Yan Yuan
Jocelyn Marie Goode
Nandy Del Castillo
Noble Dre * Ali
PTSD (Paul Kamuf and Tony Schloss)
RHAP collective (Felipe, Scarlett, Abigail, (Bri) Aspen, Jeylani, Angelly and Bianca)
Vanesa Álvarez Diaz
Abrons Art Center, Center for Court Innovation – Neighborhood Safety Initiatives, DYCD Cornerstone, Hellenic American Neighborhood Action Committee, Joan & Alan Berkinow JCC of Staten Island, Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice, Moore Jackson Community Garden, Member of the Assembly Office Harvey Epstein, PAL Cornerstone, Pioneer Works, Queens Community House, Raymond Velez Health Center, Red Hook Art Project, Red Hook Initiative, Save Our Streets, UJA Federation of New York, United Activities Unlimited Inc., University Settlement, William Cullen Bryant High School and Woodside Center for the Elderly.
Founded in 2008 by artist and designer Rodney Durso, ArtBridge enables emerging artists to transform important urban spaces by transforming street-level fences and scaffolding into a canvas for art. ArtBridge works with communities and artists to develop large-scale art exhibits that represent local storytelling and culture. Through the program, ArtBridge’s outdoor exhibits provided unprecedented exposure to hundreds of artists and covered over 50,000 square feet of public space.
Bridging the Divide is an ongoing series of artist residencies in NYCHA developments throughout New York City. Through this program, artists interact with local residents through a variety of workshops and create works of art that enhance residential narratives. The resulting artwork is transformed into large-scale public art, displayed on the fence surrounding the NYCHA sites.
Announced in September 2018, City Canvas allows nonprofits to install large-scale temporary artwork on protective building structures, especially fences and sheds, across the five boroughs. A 48-month pilot program, City Canvas is a collaboration between the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the Mayor’s Office and the New York Department of Buildings designed to enhance the visual landscape of the city while offering artists and organizations the opportunity to take their work into the public space. Find out more about the program here.
Announced in May 2021, the New York City Artist Corps was a historic investment in artists by New York City. The $ 25 million program was created to provide relief to the city’s hard-hit arts community and reinvigorate the arts and culture as part of the city’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to offering New Yorkers the opportunity to experience a wide range of free cultural programs throughout the boroughs, City Artist Corps ensured that more than 3,000 active artists were fully supported, recognizing their work as critical to the city’s revival. Through a number of partners, City Artist Corps has provided thousands of grants and support to artists of all disciplines throughout New York City. Find out more about the program here.
The Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural & Educational Center Inc. is a Puerto Rican / Latin multi-arts cultural institution that has demonstrated a broad cultural vision and inclusive philosophy rooted in New York’s Lower East Side / Loisaida. Although focused on the cultivation, presentation and conservation of Puerto Rican and Latin culture, The Clemente is equally committed to a multi-ethnic / international latitude, determined to operate in a polyphonic way that offers affordable spaces and workplaces to artists, small arts organizations, producers of emerging and independent communities that reflect the cultural diversity of LES and New York City.