(Hackensack, New Jersey; October 21, 2023) – In observance of National Arts and Humanities Month and Jersey Arts Month, the Northern New Jersey Community Foundation (NNJCF) invites people in the area to see public art and online programming available for free in Bergen County. As part of the NNJCF’s 25th anniversary celebration, its ArtsBergen initiative created a list of public art and online movies the Foundation produced for people to enjoy.
“As one of Bergen County's leading producers of public art, we have created dozens of works over the past ten years. But we don't do ‘arts for arts' sake’. As creative placemakers, we produce public art designed to address economic, social or environmental issues in communities and encourage people to see this public art,” said Leonardo Vazquez, executive director, Northern New Jersey Community Foundation.
The Black Women’s Mural
Women’s Rights Information Center, 108 Palisade Avenue, Englewood
The mural, painted by artist Tatyana Fazlalizadeh, celebrates Black women's voices, raises awareness about Black suffragists, and encourages civil discourse within the community. Leaders shown in the mural include suffragist Ida B. Wells; Dr. Josie Carter, an original member of the Women's Rights Information Center's board of directors; and activists protesting segregation at the city's Lincoln Elementary School. Other community members shown are Hali Cooper, an Englewood resident, who walked in the Black Lives Matter march, and Kia S. Thornton Miller and her daughter Toni Michelle Miller, who come from a long family line of Englewood residents.
Barrels O’ Art
Carver Park, 302 2nd Street in Hackensack
This temporary colorful, beautiful exhibition of painted rain barrels is on display through November 7, 2023. The rain barrels beautify the flood-prone neighborhood and educate the public about flooding. These professional artists designed and painted murals on the rain barrels: Fiona Clark, Anthony Coplan, Emily Gilman Beezley, Toney Jackson, Lissanne Lake, Guillermo Lopez, Dianna Mammone, John Newcomb, Amrisa Niranjan, Copie Rodriguez, and Sasha Zinevych.
The painted and unpainted rain barrels will be given away to Hackensack residents and organizations through a random drawing. People interested in receiving a free painted rain barrel may sign up here: https://tinyurl.com/Hackensackbarrels.
The Sack Mural
135 Main Street at the corner of Demarest Place in Hackensack
The mural, created by artist Damien Mitchell, presents the municipality’s rich history with a postcard of Hackensack reflecting its unique cultural assets.
Found at various locations along Main Street in Hackensack
Anti-littering messages were painted on utility boxes on Main Street. These artists painted the anti-littering themes on the boxes: Monica Chavarria, Lawrence Ciarallo, Tai Hwa Goh, Jonathan Houssou, Marcus Story, John Newcomb, Poramit Thantapalit, and Kenneth Ziobro.
Flood Theater, 400 Maple Avenue in Oradell
Flood Theater, a community-inspired temporary public artwork installation, raises awareness about flooding along the Hackensack River. The art display, designed and created by artist Juliacks, remains on exhibit now through November 21, 2023 at the field next to the Oradell Train Station, located at 400 Maple Avenue in Oradell, New Jersey. This public art incorporates community members’ stories and artwork from Oradell, New Milford, and other municipalities along the Hackensack River that are affected by flooding.
‘Where’s Wally?’ Ground Mural
622 Oradell Avenue in Oradell at the intersection of Oradell Avenue and Kinderkamack Road
This public art honors the late Oradell native and NASA astronaut Walter Schirra. Designed by local artist Nina Tsur, the art on the park’s sidewalks leads to the gazebo, presenting the community’s shared vision of exploration and space.
‘Stories on Main’
People will want to watch the inspirational docuseries about Hackensack immigrant business owners by award-winning filmmaker and producer Dana Glazer filmed. Entrepreneurs featured in the film were Aida Yungasaca, owner of Colombian Fashion LLC; Nelfita Rodas, owner of the Colombia Bakery Factory; Yusef and Tess Ural, previous owners of El Turco Restaurant; and Domenico Daniele from Coffee Break '. Watch their moving interviews online at https://downtownhackensack.org/stories-on-main-street/.
About Northern New Jersey Community Foundation
The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation, a not-for-profit 501(c) 3 organization based in Hackensack, New Jersey, works with local governments, school districts, businesses, non-profit organizations, and citizen groups to improve community life. Through collaborative partnerships, regional problems are identified and resolved. Opportunities are discovered and explored by talking and learning from each other and sharing ideas, best practices, services and resources. The Foundation's primary areas of work are the environment, arts and culture, public health, education, civic engagement and philanthropy. For more information, visit www.nnjcf.org, send an email to email@example.com, or call 201-568-5608.
The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation’s ArtsBergen initiative, a regional arts alliance, works with various stakeholders. These stakeholders encompass artists, arts organizations, businesses and municipal leaders, who use the arts to shape the social, physical, cultural, and economic identity of communities. Creative placemaking, a community-led, arts-driven approach, is used to increase vibrancy, spur economic development, and build capacity among residents to take ownership of their communities.
ArtsBergen is the only initiative in Bergen County, New Jersey offering a range of services in creative placemaking. The initiative has partnered with multiple municipalities facilitating creative teams, developing public art and creative placemaking plans, and directing and managing public art projects to preserve and express community culture. For more information about the ArtsBergen initiative, visit www.nnjcf.org/artsbergen/.
Photo caption: Barrels O’ Art on display in Hackensack, New Jersey. Photo Credit: Northern New Jersey Community Foundation