Contacts: Wyckoff Hts Medical Center, D. Fairbairn 718-302-8490 / Artist, D. Saunders 646-808-6035
PHOTOGRAPHY BY DARYL-ANN SAUNDERS, WORDS BY BUSHWICK RESIDENTS
Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, 374 Stockholm Street at Wyckoff Ave, 06/01/2012 - 05/25/2013
LOOM Gallery, Lobby Gallery at 1087 Flushing Ave bt Porter & Knickerbocker, 05/28 - 07/29/2013
The project, an ongoing series, started during the artist’s two-year participation in SPARC (Seniors Partnering with Artists Citywide), a NYC art residency program that connects artists through a proposal process to city senior centers with workspace.
Requesting to be paired with Diana Jones Senior Center in Bushwick for her residency, Ms. Saunders created a small “pop-up” photo studio where she began creating studio portraits and collecting written text by current Bushwick residents living in the area since the 1970s. Many center and community members are included in this effort.
“In Bushwick," the artist explains, "the 1970’s and 80’s were difficult decades marked by drug abuse, arson, crime, and gang activity. The Pioneers of Bushwick project commemorates residents that persevered, raised families and contributed to a rich cultural tapestry during those times and up to its current resurgence.
Their contributions will now be in evidence within Bushwick history and can be considered by both new and long-time residents. And as this artwork is viewed, it is hoped it will stimulate dialogue, not just about Bushwick and its history, but also about topics of aging, human value, perseverance,self-worth and cultural experience.”
A culminating two-part exhibit was displayed at Diana Jones Center during Feb. 2012 and June/ July 2012. Following that exhibit, the series was installed at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center in Bushwick with an intended close date of August 30th, 2012 but was held over through May 25th, 2013.
The series will soon be on display at another neighborhood venue, LOOM Gallery. Sponsored by Bushwick Community Darkroom, the exhibit is from May 28 through July 29th, 2013 and is part of the local Bushwick Open Studios 2013 art festival the first weekend of June (May 31 - June 2, 2013). The artist will be present at LOOM Gallery during Bushwick Open Studios on Sat from 2-5pm and Sunday from 4-6pm. In addition, the public is invited to a reception/ talk 6-9pm on June 17th.
Ms. Saunders is a professional and fine art photographer. Her images have been published worldwide, are exhibited regularly and held in collections, public and private. Details, links and maps for the two exhibits indicated above may be found on the Pioneers of Bushwick blog. Additional news, artist and artwork information may be viewed at DASfineart.com.
Project/ exhibit space, senior participation and staff support was generously donated by Diana H. Jones Senior Center (Director: Narcisa Ruiz-Secchiano) and their sponsor, RBSCC. Framing was donated by the Wyckoff Heights Medical Center.
The Space for Art program, now SPARC (Seniors Partnering with Artists Citywide), was initiated by the Brooklyn Arts Council in partnership with the New York City Department for the Aging and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. The program is now supported, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts.