"WE ARE: A Nation of Immigrants" is a large-scale public art installation, designed to uplift the voices of immigrants
This extraordinary public art exhibit features larger-than-life portraits of local immigrants, which will be hung on the churches of the historic New Haven Green and surrounding areas. These 25-foot photographic portraits underscore our common humanity, bringing immigrants of diverse backgrounds into the public square to be seen, contemplated and appreciated. Whether recent citizens or longtime residents, documented or undocumented, eager travelers or fleeing refugees, these courageous men and women continue to form the heart of our sanctuary city and to define our country.
From the beginning immigrants founded, forged, and fostered our settlements. Over the centuries they broke ground for new technologies, industries and processes to enlighten our existence, and build a better tomorrow. The public arts installation, "WE ARE: A Nation of Immigrants" acknowledges and celebrates refugees and immigrants. It seeks to build stronger and more tolerant communities by building familiarity and awareness, and revealing what is already there, the common and inherent dignity we all possess. Through his bold yet intimate portraits, photographer Joe Standart invites us to be more aware and compassionate.
The "WE ARE" team is extremely grateful for the help and support of IRIS (Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services), Junta, ULA and others. This project has been initiated in part to support their efforts.
Help us raise $10,000 to print and hang these dignified portraits
We are turning to the Kickstarter community for help in funding the installation of this exhibit. It includes the printing and installation of 14 large photographic murals, measuring 9' x 25,' many of which will be presented on the walls of the historic churches on the New Haven Green - thus linking today's immigrants with our heritage as a country founded and nurtured by immigrants.
This Kickstarter is a small but important part of this project. We are hoping to far surpass the stated goal, which will allow us to exceed expectations for this installation and community outreach. Have fun and think generous!
The murals will be installed in various parts of the city, including on the historic Pirelli building at IKEA New Haven...
Thanks to the generosity and desire to support our immigrants, IKEA New Haven has granted permission to present our portrait on the iconic Pirelli building immediately off of I-95, which 200,000 people pass by every day. The portrait will measure 48' x 68'. IKEA New Haven will also sponsor the installation of this image.
1-½” stainless steel frames, standing 8' tall (see below), are being constructed to continue presenting the story and to visually link the murals on the churches. Clustered in one of Connecticut's most historic and beautiful community greens, the installation is designed to offer a more intimate, face-to-face, contemplative encounter with the portraits. The frames placement on the highly trafficked Green demands that they be extremely sturdy and safe.
This exhibit invites the local community, visitors to New Haven, all immigrants, the International Festival of Arts & Ideas, and graduates of multiple colleges/universities and their visiting families to consider the role and place of the American immigrant at a critical time, when national immigration policy is being crafted. The exhibit will run from May – September, with the portraits and DACA histories used in creative ways to bring attention to our nation of immigrants. The project may travel to other cities.
Mark your calendars for these dates. Join us at our Opening Celebration:
- April 21, 2018: Naturalization Ceremony
- April 24, 2018: City of New Haven 380th Anniversary
- June 8, 2018: Opening Celebration
- August 15, 2018: Exhibit Closing
The core installation consists of approximately 8 large-scale (25 foot high), dignified portraits of refugees and immigrants attached to the exterior walls of the three Churches on the Green and to other venues. The 20 monolithic structures link the churches. Additionally, Portrait banners will be on display in various parts of the city including on the Library, on City Hall, and other structures.The exhibit will be installed over a period of time allowing us to celebrate several city events in the process: A Naturalization ceremony on April 21, The 380th Anniversary of the founding of the City on April 24th, and the graduation of several universities and colleges during the week of May 21st. The official opening will take place on Friday, June 8 at 6 PM at the west end of Center Church - the day before the opening of the International Festival of Arts and Ideas. All are invited – We expect an audience of well over 220,000. The Exhibit will close on August 15.
Our Team: Our team is made of of individuals passionate about building a stronger New Haven and country, and includes Andy Wolf, Director of the City's Division of Culture and Tourism, Jennifer Aniskovich, not for-profit advisor, Duo Dickinson, architect and conservator for Trinity Church on the Green, Lucy McClure, organizing director on Nasty Women New Haven, Randi McCray, director of UrbanCollective, Reverend Kevin Ewing, pastor of Center Church on the Green, and others.
- City of New Haven, The Division of Arts, Culture and Tourism
- The Arts Council of Greater New Haven CT / Students for a Dream
- The Committee of the Proprietors of Common and Undivided Lands at New Haven
- Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services (IRIS)
- International Refugee Day
- The International Festival of Arts and Ideas
- Junta for Progressive Action
- Unidad Latina en Acción
- St. Ann’s Episcopal Parish, Old Lyme CT
- Trinity on the Green, New Haven CT
- United Church on the Green, New Haven CT
- Center Church on the Green, New Haven CT
A special limited edition, 18" x 24" version of our exhibition poster will be available as a reward for contributions at the $60+ level. Edition will be 30 prints, hand numbered and signed by Joe Standart.
Risks and challenges
This project is fully supported by the City of New Haven, by the Arts Council of Greater New Haven, and by many other groups.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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