Volume 22, Number 04 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | June 5 - 11, 2009
The Downtown community will soon be home to a whole new generation of aspiring young artists, and thanks to the CUE Art Foundation, students from P.S. 89 will be getting their first big break.
This year’s exhibition displays the work of students from ten New York City schools, including P.S. 89’s own Cecilia Gault and Olivia Zachs, both in fifth grade, and Zach Cassel, second grade.
The exhibit theme is collections, so the kids in all of the 12 schools involved have produced over 200 pieces of art collectively on their own personal interpretation of what a collection is.
Gault,10, decided to do her piece on Kewpie dolls. “I was like you know what I want to do, I want to do a piece of art with these nice dolls,” said Gault. “I photographed it and then I went to a copy machine thingy, then it became black and white, and then I put it on a silk screen. It took me a week or so to complete it.”
Ryan White, CUE’s programs assistant, said that participating students, who are chosen by their teachers, visit the nonprofit foundation for one of many rotating exhibitions to meet with either an arts educator or an artist. “The basic goal is to get them engaged and talking about the work that they see, feeling comfortable in gallery space, and [then have the artists] start a dialogue with the students about the work,” he said. Following the initial visit, CUE sends donated canvases to the participating students’ respective schools, where the students then create their own work for the week-long exhibition.
The students’ pieces are all available for sale at the gallery for $50 each, and the profits from each work will be divided equally between the student and their school. The 2009 Modern Art Works exhibition will run through June 6 at 511 W. 25th St.
So has the program spawned a new lineage of artists?
“Well, after doing this,” Gault said, “I think I would want to do it every day.”
— Helaina N. Hovitz