The September issue of Brooklyn Family magazine tells the story of the PS 102 mural. Here’s an excerpt.
“PS 102 Principal Theresa Dovi welcomed the concept wholeheartedly introducing the idea of the public art mural to the school’s families early in the year, and invited them to answer the question: ‘How does your family welcome guests into your home?’
“In response, students submitted a variety of drawings, photos, writings and belongings. The arts committee received more than 100 submissions that reflected the wide range of cultures, customs and traditions at the Bay View School. Judah submitted one of his favorite quotes: “A stranger who dwells among you shall be to you as one born among you and you shall love him as yourself.”
“Curtis and Wisneski helped the arts committee sift through the contributions — flags, pinatas, Arabic tea sets, family photos, pictures of the Taj Mahal, drawings of the earth, beloved toys, and a variety of writings — to identify overall themes to inform the mural. The artists designed a narrative mural consisting of nine panels, each telling a part of a story about a young boy being welcomed into a new community by a culturally-diverse group of people. He is first greeted by a classmate who introduces him to a larger student body, part of a diverse neighborhood, within a global city, in an interconnected world.
“The kind, simple gesture sets the picture in motion, guiding the eye through a vibrant celebration of respect, acceptance, sharing and love. That sentiment is echoed in words of greeting, spelled out in 43 different languages on the wall, some written on the sidewalk in chalk, others on building marquees and walls, and still others waving from colorful banners.”