Thanks to the ongoing support of NYC Council Members Vincent Gentile, Fernando Cabrera, Donovan Richards, and Andrew Cohen, in 2018 DCA directly invested in our work at eight schools through the Cultural Immigrants Fund, Cultural After-School Adventures (CASA), and Art as Catalyst for Change Anti-Gun Violence initiatives. Those investments supported Murals and Media programs in Brooklyn, The Bronx, and the Rockaways, and a borough-wide arts festival for six Queens middle schools.
Read about each initiative below, but first, a virtual tour of the students’ completed work from the first three years of our partnership.
NYCulture Sponsored Murals
NYCulture Sponsored Student Films
2018 Queens HeART Beat Festival
Art as Catalyst for Change (2018)
Borough-wide, Art as Catalyst for Change funding allowed us to:
- Produce the 2018 HeART Beat Festival as the Queens culminating event for initiative;
- Host 480 middle school students from five schools for a 3-hour field-day style arts festival arranged in fourteen activity centers.
- Enjoy the HeART Beat Photo Diary here.
At MS 42Q, Art as Catalyst for Change funding allowed us to:
- Provide 200 middle school students accredited, in-school Murals and Media classes for an entire semester;
- Provide 30 students and 40 volunteers after school and weekend Murals programs;
- Produce the 600 square-foot “Choose Kindness” mural, one year-end celebration, and three student films.
At MS 183Q, Art as Catalyst for Change funding allowed us to:
- Provide 180 middle school students accredited, in-school Murals classes for an entire semester;
- Produce four interior murals exploring the theme of “Your Best Self,” and one year-end celebration.
CASA - Cultural After School Adventures (2018)
With support from CASA, Thrive Collective provided a fifteen-week, multidisciplinary after school arts program on Mondays and Tuesdays from January 8 – May 1 at MS/HS 141 Riverdale/Kingsbridge Academy. Students selected Murals (Mondays and Tuesdays) or Media (Tuesdays only) and worked collaboratively to produce a project related to the medium they learned.
The Murals students worked together to conceive, design, and produce the “One Tiger, Many Stripes” interior mural which was subsequently installed outside the school library; unveiled at a ceremony attended by Council Member Andrew Cohen on May 17th; and showcased at the school’s arts festival on May 21st. The Media students worked together to conceive, direct, film, and edit the “Let’s Prevent” documentary about bullying that debuted at a film festival at the school on May 5th.
Immigrants Cultural Fund (2018)
With support from the Cultural Immigrant Initiative, Thrive Collective provided visual arts classes for 430 students at five schools in Brooklyn and The Bronx, including:
- PS 185 Walter Kassenbrock (Brooklyn)
- High School of Telecommunications, Art, and Technology (Brooklyn)
- International School for Liberal Arts (ISLA) (Bronx, Walton Campus)
- Kingsbridge International School (Bronx, Walton Campus)
- Teaching Arts and Professions HS (Bronx, Walton Campus)
Each program explored the respective immigrant cultural diversity within each campus, and produced three public art murals totaling 2,200 square feet. Classes began in February, and empowered students, parents, volunteers, and faculty at each school to design and execute their respective murals from April – June.
The murals explored various themes related to the immigrant experience, including welcome, identity, cultural formation, and more. In each instance, the students considered their own personal experiences as immigrants or as neighbors welcoming new immigrants into the community, and designed their murals around the following themes:
- “Migration Remix” (HSTAT)
- “See Yourself in the Story” (PS 185)
- “The World We Make” (Walton Campus)
The programs included age-appropriate, in-school and out-of-school instruction that developed mural and life skills such as design, image transfer, color mixing, painting, communication, teamwork, conflict resolution, resilience, and leadership. Throughout the projects, school alumni and other students earned community service volunteers hours. We celebrated the student work at ribbon cutting celebration events on completion of the projects throughout the month of June.