The Happiness Project posts vintage photographs on abandoned buildings in Binghamton and there is now a new edition. Susan, a local artist, found photos of her father as a boy and the two new posters will appear around town. This one is on Lewis St. Can you find it?
New Exhibit Opens at Cooperative Gallery 213
May2nd, First Friday, the Cooperative Gallery 213 will open an exhibit by Peg Nocciolino, Works on Paper: Traditional to Digital and Jeanne Van Buren, Abstractions. Nocciolino’s work documents her experimentation in fine art and illustration using traditional and digital mediums. Van Buren is an award-winning photographer and painter of abstracts. The exhibit, which runs May 2 through Saturday, May 31 includes drawings, paintings, monotypes, digital and mixed media works by both artists. A reception, open to the public, will be held at the gallery on Sunday, May 4, 3-5 pm. The Cooperative Gallery, located at 213 State Street in Binghamton, is open on Fridays from 3 pm -6 pm and Saturdays from 12 pm -4 pm. The Cooperative Gallery is a popular stop on the Art Walk and is open 3 pm to 9 pm First Fridays. For more information, see the Cooperative Gallery website, www.cooperativegallery.com.
Opening Reception: Sunday, May 4, 3-5 pm
Third Thursday, May 15th, 7-9 pm. An informal discussion and presentation of Peg Nocciolino’s work and process.
The Dept of Public Art (DPA), Citizen Action of New York, and other groups helped spread the word when the Public Art Advisory Board (then called the Public Art Commssion) was up for review at City Council Public Hearings in late December of 2013, and over 100 City residents expressed their support in under 1 week.
There were still Multiple Hearings about the board and a name change, but finally the Public Art Advisory Board / Commission was passed unanimously in Binghamton City Council on March 5th, 2014. The City of Binghamton is now officially accepting applications of people who are interested in serving on the Public Art Advisory Board! See the below press advisory for more detail. (click read more)
There is amazing work happening locally to retrofit homes and a brand new group organizing to help homeowners install solar systems. The Southern Tier is becoming a model of what a significantly more sustainable economy can look like. These renewable efforts also are an important piece of our continuing to beat back fracking here in NY.
But before I pitch these programs, I strongly encourage folks to keep your eyes peeled for emails regarding a visit from Governor Cuomo. It is likely that he comes to town within the next couple of weeks, to tout his 4th on time budget. In the mean time, we will continue to keep the pressure high and fight the proposed infrastructure that is invading our communities.
Binghamton New York is a city which has recently taken a dive, but which is beloved by its residents. The city itself has witnessed better economic times and has succumbed somewhat to the drug traffic between New York City and Syracuse, but its beauty is still in the background and there are people who aim to bring Binghamton back to its former glory. The city is home to a fair deal of drug trafficking which could be worse if the people of Binghamton did not hold a love of their city and demand control of the drug trade. Binghamton has much more to offer than its reputation of being a stopover for New York City vagrants, and it shows through numerous businesses and groups who want to breathe new life into Binghamton.
Want Assurance That Tax Dollars Are Being Accounted For: "Our City Needs A Plan, Not Attempts At Political Payback"
BINGHAMTON - At Monday night's Council Work Session, City Council Democrats agreed to adjust the 2014 capital plan to shift more than $535,000 from the Capital Improvement Plan into road repairs, but rejected the Mayor's reckless proposal to defund important investments that would improve public safety. These investments include a new fire truck to replace one that is more than 20 years old and has many costly problems that could put our firefighters and residents at risk; demolition of the dilapidated First Ward pool, which was part of a long term plan to improve the Park and eventually lead to a new pool for First Ward residents; and a shooting range simulator that would result in more cost-effective training for our police officers.
The Democrats also expressed concern that more than $120 million in ongoing investments could be at risk because of lack of planning and direction by the Commissioner of Public Works, Gary Holmes.
"The Commissioner is responsible for overseeing more than $120 million in ongoing investments," said Councilwoman Lea Webb. "Monday night we agreed to shift more dollars to help address the potholes created by a bad winter, but the Commissioner, who has ultimate responsibility for all capital investments across multiple divisions, came to our work session with no concrete plan and a last minute list of streets scheduled for repair – a list he continued to revise during the meeting." In addition, when questioned on his strategy, he admitted that he hadn't even calculated the combined distance of streets that needed repair or decided which would be completed by City Crews and which would be subcontracted out. These are all requirements for accurately estimating the costs.
The Cooperative Gallery is challenging artists to think "off the wall" for a show in July. "This means art on the ceiling, the floor, 90 degrees from the wall, 3 D, street painting, performance art, video, and more," according to Judy Salton and MaryRose Griffin who are curating the show. It is an all member show and new members are encouraged to join for $30/year. "Off the Wall" will run July 3-26th, 2014. There is a May 15th deadline for idea submissions. There are size and space considerations so submit your idea on the attached form. We strongly encourage you to call for pre-approval of your submission. Questions? call MR or Judy at 584-4733 or 584-4715. or email email@example.com.
ARTS 230: Producing Public Murals, a course that Kady Perry, Bruce Greig and others will be teaching this summer at SUNY Broome summer session 1, June 3-July 4th. The class will be taught at the downtown Binghamton Campus located at the Roberson Museum. To follow is a link with more information on the learning objectives of the course and how to register for the 3 credit class. Arts 230-Producing Public Murals. Senior citizens over 60 can audit the course and High school students can get advance credit for the course too.
Please keep in mind that the studio component will include learning mural arts painting techniques, featuring guest instructor Bruce Greig from New Zealand and will feature several Binghamton based artists. If you could please share the course information with anyone you know that may be interested in learning the intricate details of planning a public art mural project.
Kady Perry has posted the following query:
I am writing to you to include you on a small project I am working on to document the history of murals in Binghamton/Broome County. I am asking for the who, what, where, when, why and how of your mural project(s) in an effort to build on the rich history of murals in Binghamton. Please see attached. The information that you provide will be included in the timeline that is being created. I will be adding this information to mural publications for the Greater Binghamton area and national websites.
As you may know I entered the scene in 2008, when I conducted research at BU on space and place making. I painted my first mural that year, launched a creative collective in 2010 (QuarterYellow), helped organize 4 mural projects in 2011, started to manage a gallery in 2012 and then helped to launch the Dept of Public Art (DPA) in 2013. In 2014 the community worked to pass ordinance RL-13-193 establishing an advisory board for public art. In addition, this year I am working with the Director of the Philly Mural Arts program to build up the DPA, am managing 4 public art projects in downtown Binghamton, partnering with reBOLD Binghamotn to have a May Mural Arts Festival, hosting a mural jam in August and will be teaching ARTS 230 Producing Public Murals this June at BCC. In 2015 I hope to launch a mural arts company with my partner Bruce Greig.
I am not fully aware of past projects and find it very important to include information on them. Also, please let me know if you are engaged in any future projects, so that they can be documented as well. QuarterYellow@gmail.com.
Six years ago this month in 2009, the website binghamtonbridge.org was created by Stephen Schweitzer and Peg Johnston as a news site and calendar for the local progressive community. The newspaper called the bridge had been published for 3 or 4 years prior to that with decreasing frequency. Known for excellent political analysis and local coverage of progressive issues, the bridge finally could not afford the high cost of printing a newspaper.
Both venues were part of the Binghamton Independent Media Center, which is part of a global network of IMC’s. In some places, where freedom of speech is limited, the IMC’s are the only places where it is possible to speak out and organize.
Articles have been posted continuously on the bridge and a calendar has been sent out every week for all six years of its existence. Sometimes the bridge has been critical in getting the word out: when City Hall installed a digital “Cost of War” clock and critics dominated the mainstream media coverage, progressives were able to read posts from those who opposed the Iraq War. Another example was when Michael Libous, Senator Libous’ nephew, wrote an open letter about gay marriage. The Press would not print it, but when posted on the binghamton bridge site it became an issue that was covered by the media.
In the past two months, Peg Johnston and Shawna Stevenson have spearheaded a revitalization of the site. “It is our vision to have a place where progressives can communicate in an in-depth way about their activities and ideas,” said Johnston. “Grassroots activists can broaden their reach and deepen people’s understanding of their issues.” So far, Stevenson has changed the look of the site with a new banner of the many bridges in Binghamton, made the site more user friendly, and sorted out numerous technical issues. She has also streamlined the weekly e-calendar/newsletter to be more readable.
Next, the pair plan to recruit more “community reporters” to keep up the current rate of posts. Posting articles on the site can provide the “back story” for local organizing and provide history, background, national significance, as well as local initiatives. This is useful for folks who are not conversant in an issue, but want to understand it or possibly get involved. Groups can also advertise events and campaigns. Once an article is posted, a link or url is generated that can be shared with contacts via Facebook, Twitter, emails, or other outlets. These articles will last for years and can be found with the new search function on the site. “We want to build community through communication,” said Stevenson, “and help local projects increase their exposure.”
Registration to post on the bridge is simple with a valid email address, and posting articles and events easy to figure out. Click on the newsletter link on the right hand side of the site to sign up for the weekly e-calendar/newsletter. The site is managed by the Center for Gender, Art, and Culture, an umbrella organization for progressive projects. Donations are most welcome!