As reported earlier, in June 2020, two groups organized by local artists, Art 2 Heart and SoHo Social Impact, brought hundreds of artists to paint on boarded-up storefronts across SoHo. Art 2 Heart gathered dozens of artists on the weekend of June 20th to apply temporary murals and other work to still-boarded storefronts throughout SoHo, including along Broadway. The group shared what they hoped to accomplish during this brief moment in the neighborhood prior to the Phase 2 reopening of New York City in the midst of ongoing Black Lives Matter protests, sharing: “If there ever was a moment for artists to express themselves it is now.“
The SoHo Broadway Initiative reached out to property owners and retailers with a goal of retrieving as many of the painted boards as possible from along Broadway between Houston and Canal before they were discarded as storefronts removed them. The Initiative made arrangements with local property owners to temporarily store boards until they could be transferred to artists who wished to pick-up their work.
Over twenty plywood board artworks have been picked-up by artists or their representatives, with three of the works now featured in a new exhibition at the Museum of the City of New York. New York Responds: The First Six Months, unveiled on December 18th, includes artwork that documents “the COVID pandemic, the racial justice uprisings, and the responses of New Yorkers as they fought to cope, survive, and forge a better future.”
The SoHo Broadway Initiative team and partners were in a unique position to support the artists who expressed themselves and preserve this work from this historic moment in New York City’s history. The Initiative would like to thank all of those who supported the our work which is allowing these three original plywood artworks that were painted on SoHo Broadway to be included in the Museum of the City of New York’s New York Responds exhibition:
The exhibition was recently featured on WCBS.