I was finally able to meet one of my contacts at MARP - Jennifer Stokes- in person earlier this week! She and all the folks at MARP have been going above and beyond with innovative programming in our neighborhood. Tomorrow, artists will paint and decorate the windows of local businesses for the holiday season! Passers-by will be able to vote for their favorite via text message. This is a great opportunity to take a stroll, grab some lunch, a cocktail or some hot cocoa, and do some holiday shopping locally.
Here's the complete press release:
Join us this Saturday, 12/6 as local artists bring holiday cheer to Myrtle storefronts using paint and lights!
Myrtle Holiday Windows Contest: A New Spin on a Popular Holiday Tradition
Watch as Local Artists Bring Sixteen Storefront Windows on Myrtle Avenue to Life with Festive Holiday Scenes!
FORT GREENE and CLINTON HILL, BROOKLYN, December 3, 2008 – On Saturday, December 6th from noon to 5pm, seventeen storefronts along Myrtle Avenue spanning from Washington Park to Classon Avenue will come to life with holiday spirit as part of the first annual Myrtle Holiday Windows Contest. The contest will bring local artists to Myrtle to create festive holiday scenes on a portion of each participating merchant's storefront window using paint and holiday lights. Residents and shoppers will be able to vote for their favorite holiday window via text message up until Christmas Day, and the winning artist or team of artists will receive $250 in Myrtle Avenue gift certificates as a prize. Take a stroll down Myrtle this Saturday, and watch the transformation take place! This project is sponsored by the Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership (the Partnership) as part of their ongoing effort to bring art to public spaces to draw more people to the retail corridor, and is supported in part by a generous donation from the PrattStore.
The Myrtle Holiday Windows Contest is the newest installment in the innovative Myrtle Windows Gallery program, which brings two-dimensional art traditionally limited to the private gallery to the public arena via the storefront window where it is accessible to anyone walking down the street. The Holiday Windows Contest creatively uses the storefront window as canvass to bring art to the community, holiday cheer to the avenue, and shoppers to Myrtle.
All the painting will take place during five hours beginning at noon this Saturday, December 6th, creating a sort of live art performance where the art-making is as much part of the excitement as the final product! All are invited to come out and watch the holiday magic happen. The following businesses are participating in the contest (listed in order travelling from west to east on Myrtle between Washington Park and Classon Avenue): Fort Greene SNAP (329 Myrtle); Ray's Barber Shop (331 Myrtle); Gnarly Vines (350 Myrtle); Burzh-wa (352 Myrtle); Kinara II (368 Myrtle); The Bakery (154 Vanderbilt); Duncan's Fish Market (385 Myrtle); Kiini Ibura (388 Myrtle); Kapella's (417 Myrtle); Karen's Body Beautiful (436 Myrtle); Jive Turkey (441 Myrtle); Joseph Tyler Salon (456 Myrtle); Barking Brown (468 Myrtle); Zaytoons (472 Myrtle); Optimum Care Rehab (474 Myrtle); Pillow Cafe (505 Myrtle); Square Root Café (584 Myrtle).
Special signage posted in each window will instruct viewers on how to cast a vote for their favorite holiday window via text message. The 'polls' will be open from December 6th through December 25th, when the winner will be announced on our website at www.myrtleavenue.org. The painted windows will be on display through early January.
"We're excited to put our own spin on holiday storefront windows traditionally seen in larger department stores, bringing cheer to Myrtle Avenue in a fun, unique way. We are proud to have professional artists, art students, and even local school teachers and students participating in this project. This is a wonderful expression of not just holiday spirit, but community involvement as well," explains Meredith Phillips Almeida, the Partnership's Director of Community Development. The Partnership hopes this contest will boost foot traffic to Myrtle Avenue during the holiday shopping season, and is encouraging residents to support the area's small businesses by shopping local during these tough economic times.