As part of La Isla Bonita Street Art Series created by Lina Montoya – Ele Eme and New World Preparatory Charter School. More than 5000 plastic bottles transformed into flowers by the students. We made a change in the Port Richmond Community, north shore of Staten Island.
It was intended to beautify NWPS campus, engage community, give hope, new life and value to the educational space; bringing project based learning to the students through the arts, and opportunities for the community to engage with the school through this work. Inspired by the school mission and by Michael Jackson’s song (formerly used during New World Prep school performances), it is a call for social justice, beginning with the self, then expanding to others, and finally towards an ideal vision of the world and the common good of all. The use of recycled materials is a call for environmental justice and the floral pattern pay homage to the Silleteros, the hand-made floral displays elaborated for the Flowers Festival Parade in Medellin, Colombia.
This project came to life through the hands of our students, parents, neighbors, partnered CBO’s, Staten Island higher education institutions, local businesses, city-wide artists, and finally our extended family members at St. Mary’s of the Assumption Catholic Church. NWP students, staff, college students, CBO’s, and local businesses took ownership of collecting and providing the recyclable materials for the artwork. Recycled materials included, but were not limited to, plastic bottles, car mirrors, put-in cups, zipties, etc.
Pictures by Lauren Steussy, Aaron Arroyo, Steff Gaviria & Lina Montoya.