2016 murals by the Rush Summer Session at BBP

Brooklyn Bridge Park (BBP) is excited to welcome back the gifted students of the Rush Summer Session to 99 Plymouth for the second year.

2016 murals by the Rush Summer Session at BBP

Brooklyn Heights

Brooklyn Bridge Park (BBP) is excited to welcome back the gifted students of the Rush Summer Session to 99 Plymouth for the second year.  Summer Session is one of the Rush Education Programs which seek to provide underserved youth with exposure to the arts and opportunities to practice them. Rush Kids and Teens participating in the Rush Summer Session spent two weeks planning, designing and painting site-specific murals for the public gallery and Community Room in 99 Plymouth, located in BBP’s Main Street section.

This year’s installation takes inspiration from the artwork of Xenobia Bailey and from the vibrant energy of the Park. Bailey, a New York-based and long-standing Rush Teaching Artist, is known for her colorful abstract works, many of which can be seen in the city’s public spaces, including her 2015 installation at Hudson Yards, Funktional Vibrations. These new murals continue the series of rotating art installations and community programs at 99 Plymouth, which recently included works by Guggenheim Foundation Fellow Matthew Jensen and the volunteer-based boatbuilding program run by the Village Community Boathouse.

Rush Teen Dakota Jones explains: “Our murals are inspired by Xenobia Bailey’s work.  Xenobia is a master crocheter who makes everything from clothing to murals. Her Hudson Yards installation has mandala-like designs that were originally crocheted but were re-worked into tile by an Italian fabrication studio. To start the process of this mural, we learned about Xenobia’s work and to crochet with Rush Teaching Artist Iviva Olenick in order to grasp the overall concept of Xenobia’s process. Then we went to Hudson Yards where we sketched Xenobia’s work.  After a group discussion about our sketches, we chose designs from Rush Teens Blaze, Ajani, Ardelia and Kiara for sections of the walls in the Community Room at Brooklyn Bridge Park. We then chose paints and sketched the drawings in very large scale directly on the walls. After this we added color in the spots we had decided on beforehand.
There are three distinct murals in our piece, two in the hall and one in the Community Room.  We worked with vibrant colors that complement and pop against each other to make an image that is visually pleasing and draws your attention. Cream, yellow and light blue backgrounds and the lovely natural light in the hallway give the sensation of watching a golden sunset. The corner mural in the Community Room has a very colorful 60’s Pop feel.  As the mural name implies, Rush Will Take You To Funkytown!”

Last year’s murals by Rush Arts Kids and Teens, collectively titled At Home in The Park, paid homage to the work of artist Mary Temple. The finished works included silhouettes of visitors engaging with the Park rendered as shadows cast onto the walls through adjacent windows. The murals remained on display from July to September 2015.

“As Artists-in-Residence at BBP Rush Summer students experience first-hand designing and creating site-specific art.” Meridith McNeal, Rush Director of Education explains. “Our partnership allows us to elevate participants from the role of students to that of professional artists.”

“We are so excited to have Rush Arts Kids and Teens back at the Park,” said Regina Myer, President of Brooklyn Bridge Park. “The students and teachers that take part in this wonderful program do a phenomenal job and their creations are simply beautiful.”

The 2016 murals will be on view through September, 2016. 99 Plymouth’s Community Room is open 8:00am – 11:00pm daily.

Photo by Meridith McNeal, Rush Director of Education