September 19, 2014

Fall 2014 Newsletter

Celebrating Art & Environmental Justice in North Troy

Uptown Summer ’14 Brought Youths, Artists, Activists, Politicians Together

We just completed our fourth season of Uptown Summer, a five-week series of arts and sustainability activities for young people! Participating youths, artists, historians, urban designers, community organizers, journalists, educators, interns, gardeners and chefs worked together through our NATURE Lab program to spread the word about environmental justice in North Troy and beyond!

The great turnout included local community members as well as visitors from around the country and world–among them Troy Mayor Lou Rosamilia and Deputy Mayor Peter Ryan, City Council members Lynn Kopka, Erin Sullivan-Teta, Jim Gordon, Anastasia Robertson and Dean Bodnar, Assemblyman John McDonald and Congressman Paul Tonko.

Messages of Hope

The heros at Troy Alley Action joined forces with a crew of Sanctuary volunteers and our summer youth employees to paint an ambitious mural on the front of The Sanctuary for Independent Media, integrating inspirational quotes and vivid images representing creativity, social justice, sustainability and freedom of expression.

Mapping our Community

North Troy teens used poetry and painting, media and journalism, photography and needle-point to create maps tracing the environmental challenges they face, including violence and health problems, urban brown-fields and global warming. Their work is now being compiled into a series of map zines. 

Creative Visions

The return of Debo Band was one of the summer’s highlights–an extraordinary orchestra  channeling the golden years of Ethiopian pop music into an exuberantly original fusion sound! The first band to headline at Freedom Square, back when the stage was a modest parking lot, they were thrilled to see the transformation taking place there. 

Like most of the summer events, Debo Band’s performance was immortalized on video–soon to be released on Sanctuary TV thanks to the efforts of Youth Media Sanctuary and our Video Ninja crew!

Eco-Actions on Abandoned Lots

This summer, we worked together to transform toxic places into green spaces with diverse “eco-actions.” Oliver Kellhammer planted a “botanical intervention” to bio-remediate devastated toxic soil identified during an investigation of Troy’s brownfields. Brandon Ballengée returned for an “eco-displacement”—relocating fish from the Hudson’s toxic waters to an aquarium decorated with objects gathered from the river banks. Also on the banks of the Hudson, local youths placed painted art signs to help keep citizens safe, warning against swimming and eating the fish. Then, community members joined Reverend Billy & The Church of Stop Shopping to bless the bees transported from a hive at CAC Woodside in South Troy to their new home in the Collard City Growers perennial garden!  

Food Justice

We’re building a great relationship with the Chefs’ Consortium to help develop awareness of food justice issues among folks in North Central Troy. Dedicated to sharing the joys of regional foods, local chefs provided delicious and healthy meals for all the participants in Uptown Summer!

The lifeblood of The Sanctuary for Independent Media is volunteer labor and individual contributions!

You can help by making a tax-deductible donation.

Donate Online Now

Stay Informed

Sign up with your e-mail address to keep up to date with events, workshops and other announcements from The Sanctuary.

Sign up for our Newsletter

Don’t worry, we ❤️ privacy and won’t sell your information, ever—and you may unsubscribe at any time.

About The Sanctuary

We use art and participatory action to promote social and environmental justice and freedom of creative expression.

Learn More