2014-03-21 / Community

Mizrachi Paints The Blues In Rockaway

By Dan Guarino

New York based artist Alice Mizrachi. New York based artist Alice Mizrachi. Working in a neighboring school over the past year, artist Alice Mizrachi realized the true, deep impact of Hurricane Sandy.

“The neighborhood suffered so much damage that...you were constantly reminded of the devastation.”

But Mizrachi, a painter and teaching artist whose work has been shown in New York, Washington D.C. and Tel Aviv, didn’t leave it at that. Working with the Beautify Rockaway Beach Project, under the auspices of Beautify Earth, and project leaders Matt Villetto and Josh Manes, she created the first in a series of murals designed to inspire and uplift the peninsula.

“Lady Sings the Blues,” by Mizrachi, made its debut in late January as a colorful, wall-sized work on the exterior of Sayra’s Wine Bar at 91-11 Rockaway Beach Boulevard.

“One of the things that inspires and uplifts people’s spirit is music,” Mizrachi said. “So I decided to go with a woman who sings about her story; whether (it’s) the story of her family’s migration or a history of the neighborhood or a love story. She is using music as a source of expression that can be felt universally.”

Part of the new Beautify Rockaway project, “Lady Sings the Blues” by artist Alice Mizrachi looks out from Sayra’s Wine Bar. Photo by Dan Guarino Part of the new Beautify Rockaway project, “Lady Sings the Blues” by artist Alice Mizrachi looks out from Sayra’s Wine Bar. Photo by Dan Guarino Mizrachi is also the co-founder of YOUNITY, a women’s art collective which provides a professional platform for hundreds of women in the arts through exhibitions, panel discussions, mural productions, and youth workshops. She has been featured in both the New York Times and the Daily News.

Beautify Earth, according to a recent presentation, “is a community based organization that brings together artists and supporters to help local community businesses to stand-out and for people to be inspired.

“Beautify Earth seeks to paint murals for community businesses.”

“Community businesses receive free art on their walls, while neighborhoods increase local commerce.”

“As a result, the community flourishes and public art” thrives and brings new attention and energy to the area.”

Its local project, Beautify Rockaway Beach, is working with business owners, artists and others on developing new mural sites.

Kicking off the next phase, Alice Pasquini, a world renowned visual artist from Rome who works as an illustrator, set designer, and painter, will be coming in from Italy in early April to begin creating a new exterior mural on a pizzeria on Rockaway Beach Boulevard.

Coming full circle from ruin to renaissance, artist Alice Mizrachi commented on her “Lady Sings the Blues” which now overlooks Rockaway Beach Boulevard. She reflected, “As I was coming up with the concept for the wall I wanted to step out of that reminder (of the damage left by the storm) and think about ideas for uplifting community.”

Not surprisingly, the “Lady” is looking up.

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