Recently, Socrates Sculpture Park received a large grant, around $300,000 thousand from Shelley and Donald Rubin. The Rubin’s generous donations to art organizations in Queens is atypical as they are less likely to come into direct contact with affluent social circles as is the usual custom with donations of this type in Manhattan. Crain’s New York Business quotes Ms. Rubin as having said, “’Socrates is an expansion of the community. It brings art to people and people to art.’”
The funds will be spread out by the park over three years. The park wants to allocate part of the funds towards developing sculpture projects and towards building an enclosed structure for art education in colder months. Shaun Leonardo, an administrator at the park has had a relationship with BSGE’s Peter Wilson for a long time. “We are a neighborhood school and Leonardo came to us to see if we’re interested in this as an after school sculpture making program,” shared Ms. Schwarz. BSGE students have worked with internship programs at the park, for years BSGE took initiative and helped out on Earth Day.
The program is 4 weeks long and will meet twice a week, starting April 15. A teaching artist will head the program while students will be planning and creating collaborative, large scale, sculpture in small groups. The culmination will be in an exhibit with a reception. “The materials are things we don’t usually use because we are limited for space, its free, I’m really excited about it,” shared Ms. Schwarz.
Originally, it was thought that seniors, with the IB art show and IB art submission completed, would take up the opportunity. However, “we were informed that there is a lot required of seniors outside of the art discipline that we weren’t aware of,” Ms. Schwarz. The opportunity was “then opened up to all high school students.” People participating would be able to earn either Community Service or CAS requirements. Living in New York, there are so many art opportunities. If you are interested, there is probably an opening for you.