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Windows on Hudson Guild: A Neighborhood Perspective


Artists in Schools

Windows on Hudson Guild: A Neighborhood Perspective

Dispatches from CMA Resident Artist Maria D. Rapicavoli's after school class at Hudson Guild.

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Next time you're walking down 26th Street, swing by Hudson Guild's Elliott Center and check out the life-size silhouettes of Maria's after school students in the window!

This culminating project draws upon the idea of the window as both a functional object and a metaphor to represent how children perceive and understand reality. Maria's students at Hudson Guild find themselves in a unique scenario – although they live in one of the city's wealthiest neighborhoods, steps away from world-class art, many of them are disconnected from their immediate surroundings and don't even know this art world exists at their doorstep.

Drawing upon the idea personal and communal identity, especially within the context of the Eliott-Chelsea Houses, Maria's project aims to foster a deeper connection between children and their surrounding neighborhood.

Over the course of the spring semester, students considered the idea of the 'window' from multiple viewpoints — first they created observational drawings of what they see out their window, then they represented what they wanted to "get rid of" or "bring into" in their lives.

With the silhouette project, students discovered how their individual contributions can be translated into a communal project that reflects and represents their unique viewpoints. They worked together to trace each other's body outline on reflective material, then cut out and installed the silhouettes on the street-facing windows.

Together, they discovered that artmaking truly is a collaborative process — when converged, different points of view can create a broader horizon and expand our sense of reality.

Maria's work at Hudson Guild is supported by the Emergency Arts Education Fund, which provides free arts education to NYC school communities whose art programs have been decimated by recent budget cuts.

Children’s Museum of the Arts’ three Residents Artists are currently implementing ambitious arts curriculum at each of our partner sites throughout New York City: Hudson Guild in Chelsea, Sid Miller Academy in Crown Heights, and Children’s Workshop School in the East Village. Come spring, our residents will showcase their students' work through exhibitions and installations across the city. Learn how you can support the work of our residents here.

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