Ground Arts & Art Start - The ‘HOME’ Project

Both organizations, dedicated to empowerment of children through art, are collaborating with the Art Start family of children in homeless shelter programs. The children will create on the topic of what home means to them. They have invited established artists to expand the conversation by creating and donating a small work expressing their view of home's which will be exhibited along the the children's. This can manifest itself in abstract ways, or more literal interpretations. It is completely open to the individual.

We are seeking to create a dialogue between creatives of all backgrounds to raise awareness about the struggles faced by these at risk teens. The proceeds of the exhibition will fund an art space for the children in the West Chelsea Building and pave an integration into it's creative community.

Opening Reception: Thursday, March 7th, 2012, 6-9pm., show runs until March 11. Gallery Hours: 12-6pm, and by appointment Location: 508-526 W26th St. 9E/9F. New York, NY 10001


In the spring of 1991, a handful of artists got together to make art with homeless kids in New York City. Over the next decade and a half, ARTSTART became an award-winning, nationally recognized model for using the arts to save lives and transform communities. We connect with kids age 5-21 living in homeless shelters, transient on the streets, coming out of jail, or surviving with parents in crisis.

Though they face many obstacles, our young people have dreams that far surpass their circumstances. They yearn to be participants and to make meaningful contributions. Art Start uses the arts to turn project achievements into life achievements. We provide our young people with opportunities for success. We give them tools, structure, support, and most importantly, a chance to be heard.

Through painting, dancing, hip hop, piano, poetry and a myriad of other art forms, we believe the arts and New York City's artists have the capacity to enable our youth participants to rise above hardship by replacing frustration and with a sense of accomplishment, confidence and direction.

"Art Start is developing innovative and creative approaches to solving the critical problems that are destroying our communities and our young people.“ Bill Clinton, President's Summit for America's Future, Philadelphia, 1997

As we have found over the past seventeen years, art is the starting point of a process; the medium through which change takes place. Providing opportunity where restriction lives, the arts guide our participants to connection, skill-building, trust, determination, and hope.

Over the years, a roster of more than eight hundred volunteer artists along with Art Start's program directors have contributed their talent to our award-winning programming that takes place inside the city's homeless shelters, teen group homes, and at Art Start Studios. These artists bond with Art Start's participants, listen to their needs, and connect them to the creative process whether through painting a mural, performing a poem or song, or producing a short film.

To date, Art Start has given over 11,000 young people the chance to find their voices in a nurturing, supportive, and safe environment. Art Start empowers underserved young people by connecting them to the contacts, resources, and tools that provide them with genuine opportunities to change their worlds, and ours, for the better.

Word about Art Start's success has also received national media attention. Features about Art Start have been portrayed on: The Oprah Winfrey Show, Bravo's documentary Stories of Arts for Change, a mini-documentary by two-time Academy Award-winning director Barbara Kopple and the 2003 CBS special, Fulling the Dream In 2009, The Sundance Channel debuted The Hip Hop Project, a feature-length documentary about Art Start's award- winning music program for teens in crisis.