2013-05-03 / Community

Paint The Town: NYC Parks Call To Artists!

By Dan Guarino


Local residents and NYC Parks and Recreation Commissioner Liam Kavanagh meet at the MoMA Dome to discuss ‘muralizing’ the Shorefront Parkway jersey barriers. Photos by Dan Guarino Local residents and NYC Parks and Recreation Commissioner Liam Kavanagh meet at the MoMA Dome to discuss ‘muralizing’ the Shorefront Parkway jersey barriers. Photos by Dan Guarino The NYC Department of Parks and Recreation has announced it is looking for artists to bring lots of local color to Shore Front Parkway and liven up its soon to be installed jersey barriers with murals.

Parks recently issued a call for artwork proposals for the Rockaway Barrier Beautification Project

In a media release they explain they are “partnering with local civic organizations, the Department of Transportation, the Mayor’s Office of Community Affairs, NYC Service, and New York Cares to solicit ideas and volunteer support for an initiative to paint the jersey barriers which will be installed to protect pedestrians and bicyclists on Shore Front Parkway from Beach 74th to Beach 107th Streets.”


Parks Commissioner Kavanagh shows examples of community painting projects at the April 16th meeting. Parks Commissioner Kavanagh shows examples of community painting projects at the April 16th meeting. They state, “Interested artists are invited to submit design ideas for these painted barriers. Each selected artist will be assigned a site within a designated sub-section of barriers along Shore Front Parkway and will be responsible for producing stencils, translating the design, and overseeing the painting of the design onto the barriers. All barrier sites will be primed in advance. Volunteers will assist selected artists with mural production during the summer of 2013.”

The barriers will separate bike and pedestrian lanes from road traffic for about one mile along Shore Front Parkway from Beach 74th to Beach 107th Streets.

Each barrier is 20 feet long and three feet high. Parks also confirms there will be about 20 access points for pedestrians, bicycles, and emergency vehicles along the way.

On Tuesday, April 16th, at the MoMA PS1 Dome, Parks held a meeting of area residents and a few local artists, including representatives from the Rockaway Artists Alliance, to get feedback on the idea. Overall the community supported the idea and also offered more than a few possible themes for the murals.

These included surfers, seagulls, fish and sea life, beach scenes and even a large “Welcome to the Rockaways” with iconic scenes painted in it.

Other suggestions were to have long, continuous wave and even incorporate scenes from the well-known Riis Park bus shelters and Whalemenia, the wellloved Beach 94 Street statue that was carried out to sea by Hurricane Sandy.

A jury with representatives from the community and the City of New York review and rank all submissions.

Parks will contact selected artists in late May. They expected to work with local civic organizations and nonprofit service organizations to solicit volunteers to paint the selected designs onto the barriers during the summer.

Each selected artist will be awarded an honorarium of $2,000 to complete a final design, produce stencils to reproduce the design onto the barriers and oversee the process with volunteers.

Each artist will receive stipend of up to $500 to cover the cost of materials to produce the stencils needed.

Submissions must be received no later than Wednesday, May 15th, and all must be submitted online.

More information and all specifications can be found at https://www.nycgovparks.org/art-and-antiquities/rockaway-beautification.

All submissions and questions should be emailed to artandantiquities@ parks.nyc.gov.

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