↑ Return to Body Painting

9-11 10 year anniversary Bodypainting Tribute in NYC

 Learn about the inspiration behind our 2011 Bodypainting Tribute to 9/11 by viewing the words of Tommy’s poem:

 

“It’s Been Ten Years (Remembering 9-11)” Battery Park, NYC September 9, 2011

Battery Park, NYC

September 9, 2011

Bodypainting Tribute to 9/11 

First Responders and Victims

 

_MG_6969

 

In honor of the ten year anniversary of 9/11, I took my cousin, Tommy, to the streets of Manhattan on Friday, September 9th, 2011 for an outdoor bodypainting session at Battery Park in New York City. Tommy is a passionate character, who was a First Responder in the aftermath of 9/11. He told me about a poem he wrote about the tragic day, and I wanted to be a part of his voice by capturing the story of the poem through my art. Entitled, “It’s Been Ten Years (Remembering 9/11),” the poem is a collection of Tommy’s thoughts and feelings about those who were killed in the attacks, as well as a salute to those First Responders who made the ultimate sacrifice. I thought it would be a perfect idea to unite provocative art with a real message that hit home at the time, so I knew bodypainting a design around the New York experience of 9/11 would be the ultimate inspiration for me. I painted Tommy all day starting at 12pm and ending around 5:30pm. Positioned right near The Sphere sculpture and surrounded by the NYC Memorial Field, (the five-day project displaying the three thousand flags bearing the names of 9/11 victims), it was a thrilling experience to know we were part of the statement of the day which was: Never Forget.

Former Construction Project Manager with the City of NY, cousin Tommy is still profoundly moved by how the country and its citizens rallied around New York when the City needed them most. “I want everyone involved with the efforts of that day to feel included and celebrated in my poem,” Tommy says. “Many have forgotten the people who were there, who risked their lives. I don’t want them to be forgotten but remembered and honored.” Tommy has a deep-seated connection to the lingering pulse of 9/11. He volunteered at Ground Zero as a First Responder working alongside firemen, police and dozens of other response units on “the pile” for days and weeks following the attacks during the Search & Rescue Phase. I felt there would be no better way to give attention to all New Yorkers affected by the tragedy by opening up a discussion about art. Because I was one of the many who remember catching the planes crashing into the towers on live TV that sad, solemn day. It was devastating.

While bodypainting is one of the world’s ancient art forms, it’s still gradually earning its rightful respect inside the fine art community, as it makes its way into more prominent view. So I was a little wary going into this project because we were dealing with a sensitive topic at a sensitive time, in the exact location where the twin towers fell. Around the corner they were having memorial services and the area was crawling with security. When I set up my easel, the cops came by and I had to explain to them what I was doing. To my surprise, not only did they let us create provocative art in the way we wished to express ourselves, but they thanked Tommy and me for coming together to make such a public art experience happen.  I was so moved with the reaction from onlookers and the overall public. They were gracious, respectful. People wanted to be a part of it, people exchanged intimate stories and took pictures. And I was so happy and proud to feel that live art initiated that.

 

 

fixed photo process  man in flags web side and poem web911_tommy__0012_Layer 3cropped tom web 1 process  _MG_1365  911_tommy__0014_Layer 1in front of flag tom webclose pic web

 

A lot of press came out too for it, including a narrative documentary filmmaker who happened to be in the neighborhood. However, the best article is the one written in Polish; once I got the chance to have it read to me by a Polish girl I was painting on New Year’s Eve at Amsterdam Billiards in downtown NYC. Click on the following link:

Polska Gazeta, “Lively image in honor of the victims of September 11”

 

And another Internationally based periodical:

 

Singapore newspaper, The Straights Times, “Hurting, But Refusing to Live In Fear

 

Leave a Reply

Twitter Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com
%d bloggers like this: