NYC Artists Stephen Powers, Lady K-Fever Join LEAP’s ‘Rising Voices’ Student Exhibition in Union Square, June 5

NYC Artists Stephen Powers, Lady K-Fever Join LEAP’s ‘Rising Voices’ Student Exhibition in Union Square, June 5

8 public schools transform lunch tables into social justice artwork

NEW YORK, NY (June 1, 2018) —Acclaimed New York artist Stephen Powers, featured in the Brooklyn Museum and throughout the U.S., along with popular street artist Lady K-Fever, will join nearly 300 NYC public school students in what is one of the largest public displays of student art in New York City. LEAP’s Rising Voices: Student Public Art Exhibition will be held Tuesday, June 5, at the northwest end of Union Square, 11 am to 1 pm. Students from eight New York City public schools (11 classes) in all five boroughs will display ordinary cafeteria tables turned into social justice murals advocating for issues of concern to the middle school students.

Powers will speak about the importance of arts in the education curriculum and Lady K-Fever will be creating public artwork during the event itself. Students from each of the schools will speak about the inspiration for their artwork. After the event, the tables will be relocated to public parks in five boroughs, near the students’ schools, for the general public to enjoy until autumn.

Matthew S. Washington, deputy borough president of Manhattan, and Elizabeth Masella, public art coordinator at NYC Department of Parks & Recreation, will also provide remarks in support of the students’ participation in the LEAP program.

“It’s known that art is a great way to expand the mind and carve new neural pathways,” says Powers. “Taking the arts out of schools left our students severely creatively impoverished. I’m grateful for LEAP for stepping into the breech. It’s great to learn art inside and outside of the classroom, because it’s outside the classroom that we apply the lessons learned from art.”

LEAP’s 2018 Public Art: Rising Voices participating schools include:

447K/Math & Science Exploratory School in Brooklyn

I.S. 51R/Edwin Markham in Staten Island

University Middle School/332M in Manhattan

I.S. 75Q/Robert E. Peary and I.S. 77Q in Queens

and six tables from I.S. 117X/Joseph H. Wade, P.S./I.S. 211X, and the Teller Avenue Educational Campus in the Bronx

Students address topics such as anti-bullying, immigration, mental health, equality, respect for persons with disabilities and racism.

LEAP’s Public Art Program is an ongoing in-school and afterschool artist residency that uses a social justice framework to empower middle and high school students to have a voice in their communities and express themselves on social issues through the creation and public exhibition of art. This program instills social responsibility and civic engagement, imparts artistic skills, concepts and techniques, and fosters peer leadership, self-confidence and collaboration.

LEAP’s mission is to provide quality educational arts programs to promote access and equity for New York City students underserved in the arts. Through artistic inquiry and expression, LEAP inspires diverse school communities to be more engaged in learning and build their creativity, collaboration, communication, and critical thinking skills.

LEAP’s Public Art program is made possible in part by The New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council, as well as The Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation, The Marta Heflin Foundation, The Kinder Morgan Foundation, The Keith Haring Foundation, and The Fridolin Charitable Trust.

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