Piazza Gratissima by Brolab

Piazza Gratissima by Brolab

On View from June 30, 2012 – December 30, 2012

Mott Haven Public Library - 321 East 140th Street (at Alexander Avenue), Bronx, NY 10454

Bronx River Art Center (BRAC) is proud to announce the public art project Piazza Gratissima by the artist collective BroLab at the Mott Haven Public Library in the Bronx. This is the culmination of a yearlong community initiative that grew out of BRAC's Shifting Communities exhibition series.

Proposal sketch for Piazza Gratissima by BroLab

Piazza Gratissima by BroLab is a public intervention dependent on the support and conditions of art viewers, Bronx residents, community organizers, and officials, so as to fund and build a Piazza in the courtyard of the New York City Public Library, Mott Haven Branch, that will serve as a multi-use space for librarygoers and act as an avenue for civic discourse. BroLab completed a successful Kickstarter fundraising campaign to facilitate this project, working closely with library goers and staff, as well as employing local workers to help realize its construction. Additionally, local organizations Bronx Green Machine, Build it Green NYC, and Friends of Brook Park kindly donated materials and gardening consultation to aid the project.

Wooden platform built for reading and community gathering by BroLab

The unveiling celebration on Saturday, June 30, 2012 will coincide with the launch of the New York Public Library's Annual Summer Reading Program and will feature several information tables by local organizations such as the Children's Aid Society, Community Connections for Youth, New York Foundling, and Boricua College. BRAC will provide information about our Summer Art Education Program, as well as upcoming Exhibition programming. There will also be face painting, popcorn, food trucks, a place for adults to sign up for a library card, and special performances featuring local acts, including music by DJ Lightbolt and breakdancing by U.G.E. and Chief69.

Breakdancing performances at the unveiling of Piazza Gratissima

About BroLab:

BroLab consists of Rahul Alexander, Jonathan Brand, Adam Brent, Travis LeRoy Southworth, and Ryan Roa. At its core, BroLab wants to see what they can create when they put their collective minds together, advancing issues such as social agency, micro-urbanism, and the general impact of accessible art in communities and contemporary art institutions alike. BroLab has created exciting contemporary and experimental art for a wide range of venues and forums, such as Art in Odd Places, The New Museum, and a recently-completed public sculpture, Humps and Bumps, commissioned through the Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning, in partnership with NYC Department of Transportation's Urban Art Program. Learn more about their collaboration at inthenameofbrolab.org.

About Shifting Communities:

Shifting Communities highlights dynamic initiatives in culture and the arts currently at work in the margins of the art world and American society. The goal of this project is to create a paradigm where community-centric contemporary art and artist think-tanks can be a tool for public service; a language for the exploration and investigation of the broader aspects of culture and society; and a magnet that can bring different cultures and ideologies together in order to strengthen a more inclusive definition of community.

This exhibition is made possible with support from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency. Additional support is provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., Majority Leader Joel Rivera, the Bronx Delegation of the New York City Council, The National Endowment for the Arts, the Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation's Art and Technology Program, The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, and The New York Public Library.

The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts

With additional support from our Donors and Sponsors:

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Bronx River Art Center
1087 E. Tremont Ave., Bronx, NY 10460
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Monday - Friday: 3:00 - 6 PM
Saturday: 12 - 5 PM
Gallery hours are only in effect during the
exhibition dates.

Monday - Friday: 10 AM - 6 PM
Saturday: 10 AM - 5 PM

DIRECTIONS TO CENTER:  By Train: Take #2 or #5 to West Farms Square/East Tremont. Walk one block east to Bronx Street. By Bus: Take #'s B9, 21, 36, 40, 42, or Q44 to East Tremont and Boston Road. By Car: Take Bruckner Expressway to Sheridan Expressway, and exit at East Tremont Ave. Turn left at the traffic light one block down onto East Tremont. Turn left after one block onto Bronx St. (Cross Bronx Expressway) towards Rosedale Ave, then exit. Turn left onto Rosedale Ave, then take a left onto Tremont Ave. Drive four blocks to West Farms Square.

This program is made possible with support from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, including Council Members Eric Dinowitz, Althea Stevens, Kristy Marmorato and the Bronx Delegation. Additional support is from Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson, the NYS Council on the Arts with support from Governor Kathy Hochul and the NYS Legislature. Foundation support is from Con Edison: The Power of Giving, The New Yankee Stadium Community Benefits Fund, The Lincoln Fund, and private donors.

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