Works from over 50 Lantern artists will go on display at Audubon Hall in Washington Heights today, in the annual all-Lantern art show. Drawn from 10 buildings across three boroughs, the formerly homeless artists’ works all explore the theme of “place”, from their Lantern apartment, to the natural world, to the solar system. This year’s theme emerged from discussions in art groups over the summer, as Lantern’s Arts Director Karisa Antonio and art therapist Emily Sharp drew connections between the works they observed clients creating.
The show encompasses a range of artistic expression, including painting, drawing, digital photography, collage, mixed media, fabric, jewelry design, creative writing and spoken word. George Rodriguez submitted seven paintings for inclusion in the show, as well as three digital photography collages. Through his involvement in several different artistic programs on offer at Lantern, George has started to develop his own, distinct artistic style, taking photographs which he incorporates as collage elements within his paintings.
“Lantern’s art programs keep you going, they give you something to look forward to every day. I have learned so much, I am really impressed with myself. You’ve got to be committed, practice, give it your best effort, that’s how you grow.”
Established two years ago, Lantern Community Services’ arts program is pioneering in the field of supportive housing, featuring a unique combination of high-level weekly classes and cultural workshops taught by arts professionals, and partnerships with New York City arts institutions such as MoMA and the School of Visual Arts. Under Karisa Antonio’s leadership the program has flourished, nourishing artistry, community and self-expression. Karisa says:
“The Art Show allows us to connect artists in different supportive housing buildings, creating communities, and giving them a chance to communicate their message to the outside world.”