Bronx River Art Center on Staying Creative During a Pandemic, 06/12/20
Bronx River Art Center on Staying Creative During a Pandemic

By Eliot Schiaparelli | web link

Traditionally, art is a hands-on activity. So when art centers were forced to shut down to keep students and staff safe from coronavirus, they did what they do best - got creative! The Bronx River Art Center (BRAC) provides gallery spaces, studios, and classes in an area that doesn’t have much regular access to the arts.

“Our mission is to really bring arts and culture to an area that has been marginalized for decades.”

That’s Michele Brody. She’s a program manager at the art center. Since the coronavirus crippled New York City, she’s been working hard to bring classes online.

“It was very important to keep that access, and we also were sending out to our students information about how they can get Photoshop through their own schools, and how the schools were offering pick-up if the students didn’t have their own computers or tablets.”

Aside from the challenges of moving online, Brody says she did see a silver lining.

"What we did focus on was just how families were working together, and how we’ve been trying to do a lot of parent-and-child workshops. So it was really great to see the parents with the student, while they were taking classes."

For the fall semester, even if they’re able to return in person, the arts center still plans to add virtual components to classes.

"We filled up immediately because people are dying to get out there and create together and be a part of the community."

Coming up are free, virtual visual-arts workshops, performances, and even a socially-distant flag parade to show off the diverse immigrant communities of the Bronx.

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Bronx River Art Center
1087 E. Tremont Ave., Bronx, NY 10460
T (718) 589-5819

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Monday - Friday: 3:00 - 6 PM
Saturday: 12 - 5 PM
Gallery hours are only in effect during the
exhibition dates.

Monday - Friday: 10 AM - 6 PM
Saturday: 10 AM - 5 PM

DIRECTIONS TO CENTER:  By Train: Take #2 or #5 to West Farms Square/East Tremont. Walk one block east to Bronx Street. By Bus: Take #'s B9, 21, 36, 40, 42, or Q44 to East Tremont and Boston Road. By Car: Take Bruckner Expressway to Sheridan Expressway, and exit at East Tremont Ave. Turn left at the traffic light one block down onto East Tremont. Turn left after one block onto Bronx St. (Cross Bronx Expressway) towards Rosedale Ave, then exit. Turn left onto Rosedale Ave, then take a left onto Tremont Ave. Drive four blocks to West Farms Square.

This program is made possible with support from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, including Council Members Eric Dinowitz, Althea Stevens, Kristy Marmorato and the Bronx Delegation. Additional support is from Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson, the NYS Council on the Arts with support from Governor Kathy Hochul and the NYS Legislature. Foundation support is from Con Edison: The Power of Giving, The New Yankee Stadium Community Benefits Fund, The Lincoln Fund, and private donors.

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