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  • Art for Progress arts education programs have been doing great work this winter, with visual arts programs in place at Landmark High School and Quest 2 Learn NY and music programs at Quest, Humanities Prep, Hudson High School for Learning Technologies, and, most recently, at James Baldwin High School, all in Chelsea.

    The Humanities music program, led by teaching artist and musician Barry Komitor, has added an after school student/faculty jam on Tuesday afternoons to two regular classes per day, enabling students to apply the knowledge and skills they develop during school music classes. In a dynamic group environment, they learn an entirely different set of skills and considerations. The group has learned “Zombie” by The Cranberries, and “Twist and Shout”, among other songs, and has regular blues and freestyle jams. Komitor also teaches drums after school at Quest 2 Learn on Mondays, and has begun offering guitar and piano lessons after school three days a week, subsidized by grant monies thanks to the Sansom Foundation.  These lessons are to serve students from former AFP programs in the Bronx and Brooklyn, which lost support or funding, including: Christopher Columbus High School Campus in the Bronx (which comprises Bronxdale High School and Pelham Prep as well as the Collegiate Institute for Math and Science [CIMS], all providing students that are participating) and The Academy for Conservation and the Environment in Canarsie, Brooklyn. Lessons are available one of the days to students from the Humanities program as well. Students from different schools and communities have recently begun to stop in on each other’s lesson times and exchange information about what they have learned. It’s pretty cool…

    Komitor and AFP would like to extend special thanks to drummer Mike Severino for donating a variety of instruments including the vintage 1970’s Slingerland drumset used in the Quest classes and by the Hudson rock band.

    Sansom Foundation grant funds have also enabled AFP to loan acoustic and electric guitars, keyboards, violins, and bass guitars to several students who have shown dedication and perseverance, and we plan to acquire a variety of new instruments in the coming weeks, depending upon what this semester’s new students are interested in learning.

    The Baldwin music program, taught by mandolin player and singer Elio Schiavo, leader of the bluegrass band Six Deadly Venoms, began this January and serves students who have been redirected from other high schools for disciplinary reasons. Thus far they have been doing stellar work, meeting during school four days a week as well as after school two days. Schiavo also leads the after school rock band program at Hudson on Wednesdays and teaches guitar after school at Quest 2 Learn on Thursdays. The Hudson rock band recently played three songs, which were the highlight moment of their school dance; playing two Ramones songs and “Use Somebody”, by Kings of Leon.

    The Visual Arts program at Landmark High School, in it’s 5th year, has continued to evolve and expand as well. Here is a contribution from Art Teacher Paula Walters Parker:

    “Right now at Landmark things are going well. The school is changing, and the students are more invested in their work. Just walking through the halls feels different. We have beautiful artwork from our students hung on the walls; we have real learning in the classrooms, and we have more students that are more dedicated to the artistic process. Last year we had students’ work displayed in the AFP shows; we had students apply to a PS art competiton, and we also went on trips to galleries and the Guggenheim Museum.  We even had a student who was accepted in Pre-college Academy Program at Parsons/The New School!

    This year we continue to work on artistic discipline while exploring more inspirational aspects of what the city has to offer. We have gone on small inspirational trips to galleries in Chelsea while building an on-line gallery for the school. The students are learning from the visits what it takes to run a gallery, and taking the information back to school to help them create the first official on line Landmark Arts Gallery.

    In class we are working toward student-inspired projects. We have a short time-span but we are working diligently towards this goal. In the process we are careful to arm the students with the artistic knowledge, skills and discipline it takes to accomplish such an ambitious project. We teach basic techniques and create exercises to build line quality, patterns, compositional elements as well as exploring knowledge of color theory; then the students create the masterpieces.

    We continue to help the students applying for scholarships and internships as well.

    The students have created some great photography, watercolor landscape paintings and still life paintings, as well as Sumi ink drawings, celebrity portraits and mix medial paintings, and there is more to come;)”

    -Paula Walters Parker


    Parker also teaches elementary school visual art at Quest 2 Learn

  • HOSTED by: NOoSPHERE Arts, Art for Progress, Amber De Vos, Mike Kronenberg, D’stroy And Rebuild, Joseph Meloy, Moody and many more invite you to a be a part of a positive cause.

    Michael Alan will be showing over 20 new and old works, drawings, paintings and prints for Auction in the project space of NOoSPHERE Arts On Saturday, January 19th at 7pm.

    The goal of the exhibition is to raise funds to help Alan who has been struggling physically with 2 major injuries in the last year. One of those injuries occurred as a result of a serious car accident in June 2012. Sales on works and donations from friends, family and all attending will be a good starting point to help Alan move on from these hard troubles, and get him the help he needs.

    It’s been an uphill battle after unsuccessful spinal surgery, dealing with permanent nerve damage and a serious brain injury. This benefit will hopefully allow some relief for Alan by raising money towards his outrageous medical bills, and getting better medical attention than what he has received.

    We hope to see you on January 19th. You can help make 2013 a better year for the New York-born and raised, wild child artist Michael Alan. This show is made possible by the help of NOoSPHERE Arts, a fun non-profit artist space in the Lower East Side.

    Special Thanks to Klemmens Gasser and Tanja Grunert for their support and concern. Special Thanks to Frames and Framers of Short Hills and Printmor for their help and donations.

    This show will run through Feb 24th and will change every other night. Michael will reside there at night drawing his heart out marathon style with the inner mantra of Get Strong, Get Better! The back room acts as a room of recovery through art, and a change of energy as the new year is upon us. its is part of the 2-year anniversary show of Nosphere arts, in the main room.

  • Thanks to all who attended our opening at Gallery Bar this past Friday. It was an exceptional night, and we were pleased to have many of the participating artists in attendance. The show will run through January 3rd. If you have the opportunity to check it out, please do. We also have some photos below for your viewing pleasure.

    It’s been a very busy year for AFP. In March, we leased the Armory on Lexington Avenue in partnership with Fountain Art Fair to produce one of the largest art exhibitions in NYC during Armory Week. This past summer we hosted AFP’s first annual 3 day music & art festival- Brooklyn Beat Festival and then launched a 3 month series of music & performance art at the same venue.

    In November, we were thrilled to host Michael Alan’s “Living Installation” and work with his crew of incredible artists. The show was a great success, and we look forward to working with Michael in the future.

    To round out the year as we began, “What’s Your Religion” opened on Friday night at Gallery Bar. As mentioned above, the exhibition will run through January 3rd.

    AFP’s Art Education Program continues to grow and flourish. We are currently working with 5 schools and hundreds of students providing music, visual art and theater classes. We just received this new promotional video that was created by Jewel Fiore, a college level film student.

    As of January 1st 2013, AFP will no longer charge a fee for artist memberships. Applications will still need to be approved, but memberships will be free of charge upon approval.

  • Art for Progress presents “What’s Your Religion”

    Group Art Show.  Opening: Friday, December 14th, 7PM – 10PM

    The exhibition runs through January 3rd

    “What’s Your Religion” delves into the broad perspective of what motivate/inspires people to approach life in a certain way. The artist’s perspective can be personal or just a general perspective on the topic. Is it religion or faith that leads the way? Is it money, power, fame or being of service to others?  What’s Your Religion?

    Featuring artwork from Ted Barr, Jef Campion, Hunter Clarke, Bill Claps, Pablo Damas, Lance Dehne, Carmen Ghecca, Berette Macaulay, Juan Manuel Pajares, Jeanne Wilkinson and Kristina Zallinger

    Gallery Bar
    120 Orchard Street
    New York, NY 10002
    (212) 529-2266

  • We had the opportunity to work with Michael Alan and attend the show on November 9th. It was a great experience to work with Michael and his crew. They really put their hearts and souls into this production, and there is a great sense of community among them.  We also used this opportunity to help some of the people in Staten Island who are having a really difficult time. Guests brought food and made donations throughout the evening, and Michael personally delivered the goods to his hometown people in need.

    The show itself tells a lot about the man. Given his physical state and the demands of the show, it’s clear Michael is a giver and a fighter. The show on November 9th was 8 hours long with a short break after a 4 hour stint. As people came to the door and were greeted by the lovely Caridad Sola, they were asked to pay $20 if they were not on the guest list. There were very few names on the guest list for this show.  Many who might have expected to be on the guest list responded, “I’ll pay the $20 to support Michael.”

    To our surprise, Michael contacted us a few days after the show and said he wants to do another show on November 24th. He was so pleased and energized by the last show that he wants to do it again. We’re proud to be part of the show again. Below are some great shot’s from the show and you can view a fantastic video that captures the essence of the performances.

    photos courtesy of Joseph Meloy