FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 2, 2008
MAYOR BLOOMBERG AND CHANCELLOR KLEIN ANNOUNCE START OF P.S. ARTS WEEK 2008
Student Music, Theater, Dance, and Visual Arts on Display at Leading Cultural Venues across the City
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein today announced the start of P.S. Arts Week 2008. Beginning today, and through June 6, this annual celebration of artwork created by public school students in Kindergarten through grade 12 can be seen at some of New York City's leading cultural venues. This year's offerings include not only visual art but also, for the first time, work in music, theater, and dance produced by some of the City's most talented students. P.S. Arts Week 2008 kicks off this evening with a reception at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which features an exhibition of 57 visual art works selected by a jury from more than 800 submissions. Shows at the Apollo Theater, Carnegie Hall, and the New Victory Theater will spotlight outstanding student performances in dance, music, and theater, respectively, on subsequent evenings this week. P.S. Arts Week is underwritten by Bank of America and produced by the Fund for Public Schools in collaboration with the Department of Education's Office of Arts and Special Projects.
"Pablo Picasso said, 'Every child is an artist,' and Chancellor Klein and I say that every youngster lucky enough to live here in the cultural capital of the world deserves to be the best artist he or she can be," said Mayor Bloomberg. "That's why four years ago we introduced a comprehensive, K-12 arts curriculum in the visual arts, music, theater, and dance."
"P.S. Arts Week showcases the extraordinary creativity of New York City students, and I'm thrilled that this year's event has been expanded to include theater, music, and dance, along with the visual arts," Chancellor Klein said. "Thanks to the dedication of our teachers and administrators and the ongoing support of cultural organizations, our students can explore and develop their artistic abilities as part of a rich, well-rounded education. This week, some students will see their work featured in the City's premiere arts institutions, and given their exceptional talent, I'm sure that this is only the first opportunity for them to enjoy such recognition and success."
"This week, we are celebrating extraordinary young artists, and the results of intensive collaborations among nonprofit cultural organizations, teachers, school officials and parents," said Kate D. Levin, Commissioner of the Department of Cultural Affairs. "Together, they unlock the creative potential of New York City students day-in and day-out, in schools and cultural venues across the five boroughs."
"An excellent arts education is essential to the creative and intellectual development of all students," said Sharon Dunn, Senior Instructional Manager of Arts Education. "The work in P.S. Arts Week reflects our ongoing commitment to expanding and diversifying arts instruction in city schools. We are grateful for our partnership with Studio in a School and generous support from Bank of America, who made this year's event possible."
"Bank of America believes encouraging arts education in the public schools is critical to the development of our country's future leaders," said Connie Verducci, New York Market Development Manager for Bank of America. "Our support of P.S. Arts Week is a natural extension of our company's partnership with The Fund for Public Schools and complements our ongoing support of major New York cultural institutions, including some of the hosts of this week's events, The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Carnegie Hall."
The reception at the Metropolitan Museum of Art includes a scholarship ceremony at which the Studio in a School Daniel Surak Memorial Scholarship is presented to twelve high school seniors whose artwork is featured in the exhibition. Each student receives a $500 award toward college tuition or postsecondary arts studies. At each event during P.S. Arts Week, the Department of Education also will honor an artist or advocate who has supported arts education with a "Spotlight Award" in the featured discipline.
P.S. Arts Week began (as P.S. Art) in 2002 as an exhibition in the Tweed Courthouse recognizing the efforts of students, teachers, and arts partners in City schools while also highlighting the importance of arts education and the benefits of a comprehensive and sequential arts curriculum. Students from every borough and region submitted work for consideration. Submissions were evaluated based on benchmarks set forth in the Blueprint for Teaching and Learning in the Arts, part of the Department of Education's standards-based art curriculum.
More information about P.S. Arts Week can be obtained at www.psartsweek.org. The Web site also features an interactive map highlighting arts exhibitions and performances taking place in all five boroughs during the month of June, representing the diversity of arts offerings available to students in city schools.
P.S. Arts Week 2008 Schedule:
P.S. Arts Week - Visual Arts
P.S. Arts Week - Dance
P.S. Arts Week - Music
P.S. Arts Week - Theater
Stu Loeser/Dawn Walker (212) 788-2958
David Cantor / Debra Wexler (Education)
Kate deRosset (Cultural Affairs)