Westfield World Trade Center recently hosted hundreds of local children who enjoyed an amazing immersive and interactive art workshop titled “The Colors & Voices of New York City”.
A vacant retail space was transformed into a stunning art workshop and studio, presented in collaboration with our arts partner, Art on the Ave, and with the help of artists from the SoHo Renaissance Factory. The New York City themed activation provided local school children the opportunity to help paint huge colorful murals and small canvases, craft paper montages, contribute voice recordings, and even decorate and paint blank cotton tote-bags to take home and keep as a memento!
The workshop was designed into different activity zones, with each zone posing different questions to encourage children to both think about and discuss how they live and interact with their city. To express their answers and feelings, they then collaboratively painted, crafted, and made voice recordings.
Some of the questions asked across the various zones included; Where do you see kindness in NYC? What do you see outside your window? Where do you see nature in NYC? If the walls could talk, what would they say about NYC? How do you move around NYC? What do you love doing in your city?
In many cases the answers, sentiments, and feeling expressed by the children, all aged 7 to 12 years, were deeply touching, highly informed, and gave unique perspectives and opinions about the opportunities and challenges of life in New York City.
For many of the children, all visiting from NYC’s outer boroughs as part their NYC Parks & Recreation Summer Camp Program, the visit was their first to the World Trade Center and Lower Manhattan. In addition to enjoying the art program, children also toured the soaring architecture of the iconic Oculus and enjoyed lunch and ice cream thanks to the generosity of Gansevoort Liberty Market and L’ Arte Del Gelato. During the two-week activation over 200 school children visited and enjoyed the event.
The workshop was also open and free to the public at other times, welcoming many grown-up locals, tourists, and World Trade Center workers, all taking time out to think about New York City, get creative, and celebrate their local community!