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Ranger Conservation Corps Art Show

This past fall, over 25 students from the Marble Hill High School for International Studies participated in an art project organized and sponsored by the Urban Park Rangers. As part of the Ranger Conservation Corps (RCC) program, these students of… more.

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This past fall, over 25 students from the Marble Hill High School for International Studies participated in an art project organized and sponsored by the Urban Park Rangers. As part of the Ranger Conservation Corps (RCC) program, these students of diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds were recruited to create temporary sculptures from natural materials gathered from within Van Cortlandt Park. The sculptures made from leaves, stones, sticks, sand, flowers, and other materials were not meant to last, but were left to degrade while exposed to the elements- gradually returning to the natural landscape. As such, the sculptures were visually preserved through photography immediately after their completion. Students usually worked in pairs or small groups, and often had only a couple hours each week to gather materials and create their artwork. This RCC project draws its inspiration from the works of acclaimed Scottish artist and environmentalist Andy Goldsworthy, as well as the work of Ansel Adams, whose early photographs became a major force for preservation of National Park lands in the United States. By engaging in this project, the Marble Hill students not only had a chance to spend several hours a week working with natural materials in an outdoor setting, but they also had the opportunity to turn their own creativity into art that will inspire others. By displaying their artwork in a public gallery setting, the students hope to encourage the community to focus on the preservation of New York City park lands, and to form personal relationships with the “wild” spaces within their own neighborhoods.

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