The neighborhood arts initiative works to amplify Hartford’s beauty

Hartford Neighborhood Art Initiative will allow local artists to bring the colors of the rainbow to bus shelters and electrical boxes on Albany Avenue

HARTFORD, Connecticut – There are new efforts to enhance the beauty of Albany Avenue in Hartford. Gray skies are no match for Hartford love.

“This includes everything from building community gardens to asking the community what project would make a difference in making your neighborhood and block greener, cleaner and more beautiful,” explained Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin.

The latest project in the making is a neighborhood art initiative. It allows local artists to bring the colors of the rainbow to Albany Avenue by painting nine bus shelters and 24 electrical boxes along the street for all to see.

The mastermind behind this initiative is Janice Castle, who has teamed up with other city leaders to make it a reality.

“We hope this helps instill pride in the neighborhood and add a little more visual appeal to the neighborhood,” Castle explained.

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Castle explained that out of 60 nominees, 33 artists were selected for their skills and art samples.

To distinguish this project, each artist has ties to the neighborhoods of Clay Arsenal and Upper Albany.

“I was born and raised in the community, and I think this community has a lot of potential and I think art is a way to tell our stories,” explained Lashawn Robinson-Nuhu.

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Robinson-Nuhu was selected as one of the bus shelter artists and stated that this is a unique experience.

“It’s not something I’ve seen so far in other cities,” Robinson-Nuhu said. “So, I think that’s what I’m most excited about. And then seeing it a lot and learning other people’s stories through their works.”

Lead artist Andre Rochester said that’s exactly the point. He added that the project has a diverse group of artists who vary in age, gender, race, ethnicity and style.

“We have professionals, we have hobbyists, we have students, we have people doing digital work, we have people doing photography, we have painters, we have draftsmen, there is also a group of poets who are part of it,” Rochester listed.

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As an advocate for the artist, Rochester said it’s also important to note that artists get paid for their work to help amplify the beauty of Albany Avenue as they bring art to Hartford.

All selected artists will receive $ 500 per project, and their artwork will be printed and installed at bus shelters in Spring 2022.

Click here to learn more about the hARTford artist Love – a Neighborhood Art Initiative.

Raquel Harrington is the race and culture reporter for FOX61 News. She can be reached at rharrington@fox61.com. Follow her Facebook, Twitter And Instagram.

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