‘Writing On It All’ Reclaims Space For Community Arts On Governor’s Island

Posted on: June 23rd, 2017 at 11:00 am by

The Testourmonials Project 2014-2016, Anthony Rosado

There’s one more week to write and draw on a Nolan Park House.

Just a short ferry ride away from the LES, Governors Island is an adventure that we should all take, and regularly as weather allows. For one more week you can catch the community-oriented interactive installation, ‘Writing On It All.’ Nolan Park House 11 has been transformed into a community owned space, where even the most painful concepts holding progressive society hostage are addressed head-on.

The very presence of this activation is one to reclaim the history of the actual ground where the park stands. Having been a military installation through every major conflict, it also embodies the conflict we live daily by existing on indigenous lands. With artists and writers from many factions and backgrounds, each week has been a different exploration of the unseen threads that that tie us together.

Some of the weeks have been about social justice, an incredibly vital reason to create engagement between communities. New School faculty Alexandra Chasin and Luis Jaramillo bring their doctorate level writing expertise, and are paired with activists and critics such as Olga Rodriguez-Ulloa, Mariame Kaba, and artist/educator Anthony Rosado. Topical engagement with guests on criminal justice reform is particularly powerful in a time where the inertia of authoritarianism has not yet broken.

This coming weekend, TestOURmonials will explore the experience of gentrification and erasure, two extremely pertinent issues to the Lower East Side and Chinatown. By positioning projects in the intersections between native and non-native New Yorkers, Anthony Rosado hopes to crack open the insular nature of these land grabs and reform the pieces into a functioning community. Art, expression and writing are powerful tools for undoing the insularity of new development and priced out people looking in.

Though at times it seems like there is no good way to approach these topics, listening is a start. Expression of oppression is more than angry facebook rants and protests, it’s in the very fabric of art and media. ‘Writing On It All’ gives physical space to these stories in all of their forms, from the temporary user-generated “graffiti,” to the conversations held in this space. Hopefully such interactions extend to our whole neighborhood.

The transportation options to land yourself one of these free and enlightening experiences are much more numerous than in times past. From the LES, take the Pier 11 East River Ferry for $2.75 each way, or the $2 Governor’s Island Ferry from Pier 6 (free for NYC ID holders). Remaining exhibitions are Saturday, June 25 and Sunday, June 26, 1-4pm. Saturday is open to the public; Sunday requires a simple RSVP to writingonitall@gmail.com.

Recent Stories

Uncapped: Beneath the Paint with the Legendary AUDIE U5

This latest installment of Uncapped is more than a year in the making, and we are stoked to have Audie U5 join us. BOWERY BOOGIE: Audie U5. Welcome to the series. Instead of the cherished and/or default “what do you write?” how about, why do you write “Audie?” Audie U5: Always Undeniably Dope In Everything!  Nah, […]

Man Jumped to His Death from Ludlow Street Rooftop

A man jumped to his death from a Lower East Side tenement rooftop Wednesday night. The unidentified man, believed to be in his twenties, took the plunge from atop 175 Ludlow Street at about 11:45pm. The suicide victim reportedly lived alone in a studio apartment there, according to a report in the Daily News. An […]

Here’s a Map Showing How the Lower East Side Voted in the City Council Election Last Week

With more than a week having elapsed since the general election, the above map plots the results of the City Council District 1 race. It was a heated campaign that saw incumbent Margaret Chin fighting for her life against the upstart Christopher Marte. Chin defeated Marte by nearly 3,000 votes to secure a third term […]

Cafe Henrie Shutters on Forsyth Street After 2 Years

Cafe Henrie, the artsy eatery founded by nightlife maven (and street artist) Andre Saraiva on Forsyth Street, closed earlier this week. Thus capping two years on the block. All elements of the establishment are gone, replaced with token brown paper in the windows. In retrospect, the writing was on the wall back in the summertime […]

What’s it Like Living or Working in Hell Square? [SURVEY]

What’s it like to live and work in Hell Square? That’s the question behind the second phase of the Hunter College graduate program study that analyzed public health and safety risk of liquor density on the Lower East Side. No, this isn’t a farce. It’s a legit effort to figure out a way to make […]