122 COMMUNITY ARTS CENTER
New York, New York
City of New York
Permits and Approvals
This project is a great example of adaptation and what makes New York City so great. The original school building, Public School 122, was built in 1894. After decades of use, for reasons we won't mention here, the school was decommissioned and became vacant. Sometime in the late 1970's, a group of young visual artists setup art spaces in the former classrooms. Other artists and individuals began to reside inside (and outside) including two avant-garde theater groups (Mabou Mines and Performance Space New York), a daycare, and a men's health center. The New York City's Department of Cultural Affairs eventually joined the effort and provided major funding for the project.
The major design challenge of the renovation and new addition, was to preserve and enhance the ethos and character of the building, while honoring the important work being made inside.