Workshop at the Senior Center
Sit Anywhere: Borinquen Plaza
Wood, steel, enamel paint
Sit Anywhere: Borinquen Plaza is a series of foldable street furniture installed on a fence surrounding the Borinquen Plaza Housing Development. Inspired by the residents who bring down their own chairs to sit on the sidewalk outside their building, this project responds to the everyday needs of these residents (many of them seniors) by offering built-in seats and tables where they already gather. The project reinforces the idea that the best public spaces aren’t necessarily the planned ones and that sitting space is a crucial element in creating an open environment. In order to engage the local residents, there were four workshops with members of the Borinquen Plaza Senior Center. The workshops consisted of residents envisioning their ideal seats through storytelling, drawing, and mapping exercises. During the installation process, the artist also interacted with residents who frequent the site. These residents eventually became the stewards of the project as they use the seats practically every day. This project stems from an ongoing interest in my practice to rethink our surroundings as places that are endlessly adaptable and have the potential for multiple functions. By installing the piece on a fence, the project transforms what was previously a barrier into something positive that brings people together. It offers the vision of a more open city and enhances the experience of our public spaces –sidewalks being one of the vastest yet most ignored of those spaces.
Borinquen Plaza Senior Center
Marva Baker, Charles Brown, Australia Correa, Lorraine Cox, Santa Figueroa, Debbie Garcia, Aida Griselt Vélez Alemán, Merlene Humphery, Victor Maldonado, Miguelina Muñoz, Adalberto Nieves, Adolfo Rivera, Ana Rivera, Angie Rodriguez, Carmen Sanchez
Special Thanks to:
Esther Blanco, Sonali Delattibodier, Ferdinand Rios
This project is sponsored, in part, by the Greater New York Arts Development Fund of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, administered by Brooklyn Arts Council (BAC).