White Plains public housing to get $50K arts infusion
Public housing in White Plains is about to get a lot more colorful thanks to thousands of dollars in federal grant money.
A $50,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts is now in the hands of ArtsWestchester for its newest program — "Our Town".
"Because of the influence that the arts have had on me, I'm really excited to pay it forward having helped secure over $50,000 for the National Endowment for the Arts for this critically important project," said Rep. Mondaire Jones.
The organization is teaming up with the White Plains Housing Authority to infuse the inspiration of art into public housing, specifically Brookfield Commons as the campus is redeveloping into a place for public art and arts programming.
"A model of what it should be like to live in public housing with art around you to live in place where you enjoy being, where it feels like home," said ArtsWestchester CEO Janet Langsam.
ArtsWestchester will work with the developer to make a plan for artwork and cultural facilities on the campus. It's part of a larger plan to rebuild the complex as new, modern mixed income affordable housing, maintaining the current tenants while introducing moderate market-rate units.
Officials hope the colorful project will bring communities together and support local artists. They say this colorful redevelopment is aiming to foster an environment that will not only change a visitor's perceptions of affordable housing, but also residents' self-perception.
The project will explore all possibilities for public art, from sculptural entranceways to artist-designed signage. Artists will also engage residents of all ages at Brookfield Commons to create temporary artwork for the campus, and their feedback will help build the long-term vision for a cultural plan at this housing complex.
"With this grant, more members of our community than ever before will be able to engage with the arts right in their own backyards," Jones said.