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PK B.A.Y (Poughkeepsie Board of Artistic Youth) & YAEZ (Youth Arts Empowerment Zone)
Submission Due: January 7, 2024

Email for submission and/or questions (detailed submission information below)

  1. Background / Vision

The Art Effect empowers young people to develop their creative voices to shape their futures and bring about positive social change. The Art Effect helps youth explore, experience, and excel in the arts, introducing them to visual arts and media, giving them the opportunity to develop real skills in these fields, and guiding them toward achieving their academic and career goals. 

Currently, The Art Effect is partnering with the Poughkeepsie Children’s Cabinet to expand the YAEZ (Youth Arts Empowerment Zone) as a model for youth civic engagement in the City of Poughkeepsie. With funding support from The Wallace Foundation, The Art Effect and the Poughkeepsie Children’s Cabinet are collaborating with four of Poughkeepsie’s out-of-school-time providers to convene adolescent leaders, The PK B.A.Y. (Poughkeepsie Board of Artistic Youth), from The Art Effect, Family Services, Community Matters 2, and The Boys and Girls Club to form a first-of-its-kind citywide youth initiative.

The PK B.A.Y. is a group of approximately 12 Poughkeepsie-based students ranging from ages 14 to 18 who work within the YAEZ to advocate for art, entrepreneurship, and youth voice to be valued in community leadership. The PK B.A.Y. believes that public art means bringing people together but public art can also mean bringing awareness to the community. The PK B.A.Y. believes that making a difference is hard but it is possible.

The YAEZ is a 10-year plan to establish a youth arts district along Main Street in Poughkeepsie, with The Art Effect at the Trolley Barn as the anchor arts institution. It will focus on youth-driven placemaking in and around the Trolley Barn. In its early stages, there will be annual arts festivals around community-inspired artworks, created by local youth and professional artists, all of which will empower the local community.

As part of their work, the PK B.A.Y. seeks proposals for public art installation work within the YAEZ that enacts their mission.

  1.  Overview and Project Description 

We are interested in working with an artist to create a public art installation that allows for youth and community participation in the process of its creation. Youth in our programs have worked on several projects ranging from murals, to sculptures, and media-based projects. For the PK B.A.Y. project, preference will be given to sculptural work, and our ideal featured artist will prioritize incorporating Poughkeepsie-related imagery, such as bridge imagery. While the desired location for this installation would be within the blocks of the YAEZ (one block north and south of Main st. stretching from N. Cherry to N. Clinton), we welcome proposals for art installations elsewhere in the city limits. Preference will be given to works in higher-visibility areas, and proposals are requested to incorporate at least one of the following themes without openly blaming or shaming anyone: unity, connection, and peace; Poughkeepsie and its indigenous history; anti-violence; drug abuse prevention; the negative effects of drugs.

The PK B.A.Y envisions this project will promote positivity, provide inspiration & give the people of Poughkeepsie a little push in the direction of stopping violence & drug use going forward. We have high hopes for this project, and we will be interested in taking measures to protect the art piece from vandalism. We are looking forward to seeing how the project will make an impact in our community, hopefully in a positive way. The PK B.A.Y hopes that this project will reach both the hearts & minds of everyone who sees it in our city. 

  1.  Project Parameters: 
    1. In the cases of a sculptural or mural pieces: minimum dimensions are 10 feet tall, five feet wide (preference of large scale),
    2. Preference given to works in high-visibility areas,
    3. Must be weatherproof,
    4. Must aim to foster positivity,
    5. Must incorporate at least one of the following themes:
      1. Unity: connection, and peace;
      2. Anti-violence: 
      3. Poughkeepsie and its indigenous history,
      4. Drug abuse prevention and the negative effects of drugs.
    6. Must draw attention to themes without openly blaming or shaming anyone,
    7. Preference given to artist who enjoy working with youth,
    8. Preference given to works that involve a community interactivity component,
    9. Though preference is given to sculptural work, we invite proposals covering a wide variety of arts.

The artist would work alongside PK B.A.Y. to plan the work in early 2024, with the goal of actual production taking place during spring 2024.  

Timeline of 2024 PK B.A.Y. Public Art Project

  • Submissions due 1/7/24
  • Notification of acceptance 1/19/24
  • Collaborative planning/pre-production work with artist(s) and youth starts earliest 2/6/24 
  • Execution/production of work with artist(s) and youth takes place between March-June 2024 (timeline depends on scope of project, etc.)
  • Final project must be completed by 06/28/24
  1. Proposal Submission Guidelines
    1. Artist Bio
    2. Resume and/or CV 
    3. Sample of Work Portfolio (Website or google drive links welcome) 
    4. Project Description (1 page)
      1. Description of your project concept 
      2. How do you imagine your work of art activating the public?
      3. What role do the youth play in the creation and execution of the proposal?
      4. Proposed project budget (See #6 for Budget details)
      5. Proposed project timeline (Students meet Tuesdays and Thursdays 3:30-5:30pm, You can begin working with students on 2/06/24, but the Project must be completed by 06/28/24)

File types accepted: .doc, .pdf, .png, .jpeg, .mov, .mp4) Submissions must be emailed to by 01/07/24 by 11:59 pm.

  1. Artist(s) Selection Process

Artist(s) applications will be evaluated on the following criteria:

• Artistic merit as evidenced by the submitted representation of past work.

• Appropriateness of the artist’s medium, style, and previous professional experience as they relate to the art goals and opportunities in this project.

• Experience with projects of similar scale and scope 

• Experience working with community groups and/or youth 

• The ability of the artist(s) to successfully pitch a work of art/ project that youth believe fits the mission of PK B.A.Y. and Youth Arts Empowerment Zone.

The selected artist(s) will be notified in January 19, 2024

  1. Range of Project Cost

The Art Effect will provide the guest artist a fee of $5,000, and can provide reimbursable support for supplies of up to $2,000. Cost proposals should include a breakdown of costs for materials, site visits, collaborative brainstorming sessions with youth, and drawing or maquette creation.

  1. Location Information

The Trolley Barn is located at 489 Main St, Poughkeepsie NY 12601. The Youth Arts Empowerment Zone encompasses the block of Main Street running from N. Cherry to N. Clinton, extending one block north and one block south of Main Street. A map indicating the YAEZ boundaries is on the following page. If you have any questions about the project, please feel free to reach out to

Dutchess Arts Camp: Poughkeepsie Week 4

Thank you for opting-in to the midweek update for Dutchess Arts Camp: Poughkeepsie!

The theme of the final week of camp is Uniquely YOU and students are exploring different methods of self-expression through a variety of mediums. Projects include watercolor silhouette paintings, dolls, peekaboo mugs, music and interviews, digital animation with Rotoscope and Pixilation, dance, and more! Check out the photos:

Join us on Friday, 8/4 for our end-of-week showcase, where you’ll view students’ projects. Doors will open at 2:30pm for our gallery walk and media screening. A dance performance will take place at 3:00pm, followed by dismissal and collection of your children’s art at 4:00pm.

For more news, early bird discounts on fall programming, and more, follow us on Facebook and Instagram!

PKX Reel Exposure Panelists

The Breaking Into The Business Film and Media Insider Panel will discuss how each of the panelists got their start in their industry. With a diverse level of experts including an entrepreneur, film director, actress, executive producer, and journalist on the panel, we will get a multigenerational understanding of what it means to be in the media industry including an up close and personal look at the various pathways available, opening minds to all possibilities! Hear from the panelists as they share their origin stories, future projects, and what skills may be helpful for youth looking to start out in their world.

Mary Stuart Masterson is a filmmaker, entrepreneur, mother of four, committed locavore and full time resident of the Hudson Valley. Her film, TV and theater career, includes roles in At Close Range, Some Kind of Wonderful, Immediate Family  [National Board of Review Award] Fried Green Tomatoes, Benny and Joon, and the Broadway musical, Nine [Tony Award nomination], with recent film roles in Daniel Isn’t Real, Sid is Dead, 5 Nights at Freddy’s and The Senior (in post-production). Mary Stuart moved to the Hudson Valley in 2006 when she directed, The Cake Eaters, starring Kristen Stewart and Bruce Dern (released in 2009). In 2016, Masterson founded Hudson Valley-based, Stockade Works, a crew training and mentorship non-profit, followed by Upriver Studios, a sound stage facility in Saugerties, and then her production company, Quality Pictures.  With her husband, Jeremy Davidson, she is co-founder of the Storyhorse Documentary Theater project. 

Nile Clarke is a long time media content specialist in all things creative with film and television experience from the Hudson Valley REGION in New York. Clarke directed her first film in Poughkeepsie and continues use the Hudson River as her backdrop. She is currently the EIC at The Goodie Drop is a good news and great media services outlet for the local community.

Jasmine Aiyana Garvin is an actress from Poughkeepsie, NY. She graduated from The New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts in 2021 with a degree in Musical Theatre. Soon after, she received a spot in the 2021 Warner Brothers Television “Top 10 Actors in Training”, a global casting initiative for recent graduates from acting programs. You can find her listed amongst the talented cast of “Poker Face”, a murder mystery-of-the-week series by Rian Johnson and Natasha Lyonne on Peacock. She strives to push boundaries, create opportunities, and share her knowledge with others as much as possible. She is currently working with the Poughkeepsie City School District, Poughkeepsie Rising, and New York Stage and Film to strengthen the relationship between her community and the performing arts.

Hezues R.

Hezues R. is the founder of the S.I.C. (Social Impact Content) Film School, the first film school focused entirely on advocacy for Social Issues. We address Gun Violence, Mental Health, Suicide Prevention and other issues through innovative programs like Glocs4Ocs, the country’s first Gun Exchange / STEM program which allows youth to trade in a gun and receive an Oculus VR Headset. The Founder of S.I.C. (Hezues R) has been Honored by Barack Obama for his work in Gun Violence Prevention. We offer schools Curriculum, Mentors, Teaching Artist (actively working on major productions) and Production Resources like our Ambulances converted as Mobile Classrooms, which operate as Podcast Studio, Editing, Video Village, and Full Production Vehicles. Students can produce content on location or we can pull up to schools that are under-resourced in Production Equipment.

Magalie Laguerre-Wilkinson is an award winning journalist Magalie Laguerre-Wilkinson became Vice President of News Programming and Executive Producer of NICK NEWS at Nickelodeon in October 2020. Prior to joining Nickelodeon, she worked for 60 MINUTES, America’s most watched news program, for 16 years.  She produced stories for Ed Bradley, Lesley Stahl, Steve Kroft and Anderson Cooper. She was a key producer on one of the broadcast’s most memorable and inspiring stories about an orchestra in the heart of Africa.  The Bob Simon story about the Kimbanguist Symphony Orchestra in the Democratic Republic of Congo won Peabody and Emmy accolades. Laguerre-Wilkinson has reported from the far corners of the world and covered domestic stories including Hurricanes Katrina in New Orleans and Sandy in New York.   Her Haitian roots have made her an invaluable producer on CBS News coverage of the country, including an Emmy-winning 60 MINUTES report on the deadly earthquake there in 2010. She also served as a correspondent for the “60 Minutes” online franchise, “60 MINUTES Overtime” and for CBS News.  In addition, she was a reporter for the CUNY-TV programs, “Arts in the City” and “Science & U” and co-hosted the Carnegie Council’s digital franchise, “Ethics Matter”. Laguerre-Wilkinson also serves as moderator and master of ceremonies for a number of events including The French Institute/Alliance Française 2015 and 2017 galas and The Voices of Faith Women’s Conference at The Vatican (2016, ’17, ’18 and ’19). Before joining 60 MINUTES, she worked as an associate producer and producer for anchorman Tom Brokaw at NBC News. The native New Yorker lives in Manhattan with her husband, Bruce and their daughters, Juliette and Joséphine. 

RSVP HERE to Save Your Seat!

Arts for Healing Workshop at Vassar-Warner Home

In December, The Art Effect’s MADLab students helped facilitate an incredible Arts for Healing workshop with residents of the Vassar-Warner Home. The workshop involved two sessions: “Abstract Painting” and “Intergenerational Illustration”. In the first session, residents experimented with abstract painting techniques; in the second, The Art Effect’s Media, Art, Design Lab (MADLab) students listened to stories of residents’ favorite holiday memories, then went on to illustrates these memories into a picture book holiday gift for each resident to keep (check out the book below)!

Expressing themselves through the soothing power of painting, the residents translated powerful emotions into a visual medium. Unexpected choices were an integral parts of this process; mistakes were transformed into poignant works of art.

When the workshop finished, 100% of participants reported a “strengthened sense of self” and 75% of participants said their stress level decreased and sense of optimism increased.

MADLab students spoke one on one with residents during the “Intergenerational Illustration” workshop. Each resident shared a favorite holiday memory and the students used the skills they’d cultivated in the MADLab program to bring this memory to life with unique illustrations.

Classic winter experiences like building snowmen or gathereing with family for a special meal were included, as well as distinctive memories like the first snowfall on a farm or a special holiday trip on a train. Each story was rendered in a student’s unique style, then compiled in a book which was gifted to residents. The book can be viewed online.

Whether the Vassar-Warner Home residents created their own paintings or shared their stories with MADLab students to generate collaborative works of art, The Art Effect’s Art for Healing workshop is now yet another holiday memory to be cherished! Learn more about The Art Effect’s Arts for Healing program here.

2022 Big Read Library Workshops

In partnership with the Poughkeepsie Public Library District’s Big Read, The Art Effect is offering free artmaking workshops at libraries around the county. See all library workshop offerings below with registration information.

Painting Pretty Monsters

In this workshop, participants will learn about illustration and how to translate the written word into visual images, then select passages from Pretty Monsters to create acrylic or watercolor paintings which illustrate the mood and tone of the literary scene. Participants will focus on visual metaphor and abstract representation (using only shapes, symbols and brushstrokes) to learn painting techniques that can even help beginners capture the emotional landscape of the passage.

Friday October 7th, 11am-1pm @ Clinton Community Library

Adults only

Registration Info: free & open to the public, call Clinton Community Library at 845-266-5530 to register

Friday November 4th, 6:30-8:30pm @ Staatsburg Library

Ages 12 – Adult

Registration Info: free & open to the public, call Staatsburg Free Library at 845-889-4683 to register

Animating Monster Metaphors

Wednesday November 9th, 2:30-4:30pm @ Millbrook Library

For Teens

In this workshop, participants read excerpts from Pretty Monsters and discuss how monsters can be metaphors for everyday problems and issues (a schoolyard bully becoming a ghost that haunts you, for example), and then each create art for and animate a short video scene to bring  their monster metaphors coming to life!

Registration Info: free & open to the public, call Millbrook Free Library at 845-677-3611 to register

Fall Art Courses Interest Form

Take a deeper dive into the art you fell in love with this summer in one of our many art classes this fall at The Art Effect. Registration Opens Soon! Sign up here to receive updates!

Explore, experience, and excel in visual arts and media this year. Art classes give students the opportunity to develop real skills in the arts, and guides them towards achieving their academic and career goals. YOU can be the first to sign up for fall courses! Click the interest form link below to sign up for more information about fall classes.

Here’s a sneak peek at what we will be offering beginning this September:

Ages 5 – 11: Explore Classes
Adventures in Wearable Art: Young artists transform into an original character through imagination, mixed media art, and play using their wearable art creations.
Adventures in Shadow Puppets: Design characters and learn how light interacts in a world of shadows made from mixed media.
Art Inspirations – Exploring: Create vibrant works of art in multiple media inspired by the Dorsky Museum at SUNY New Paltz, and beyond!
Exploring Puppetry: Design and create original puppet characters, bringing them to life through mixed media art making and performance.
Exploring Drawing & Painting: Bring imaginary characters and worlds to life while learning to express yourself through beginner drawing and painting techniques. 
Exploring Stop Motion Animation: Learn how to create stop motion animation through with clay figures, set design, and digital software.

Ages 11 – 14: Experience Classes
Art Inspirations – Foundations: Create vibrant works of art in multiple media inspired by the Dorsky Museum at SUNY New Paltz, and beyond.
Foundations in Digital Art & Illustration: Create animated gifs, manipulate digital photos, and unlock the tools you need to make incredible digital artworks.
Foundations in Film & Animation: Level up your love of films by broadening your skills in formal cinematic techniques through filmmaking and animation.
Foundations in Drawing & Painting: Take your drawing and painting skills to the next level while learning various technical art making methods and mediums.
Foundations in Printmaking: TBD

Ages 14 – 19: Excel Classes
Art Inspirations – Portfolio: Create vibrant works of art in multiple media inspired by the Dorsky Museum at SUNY New Paltz, and beyond.
Portfolio Development Foundations: Gain foundational skills in drawing and painting the basics of human proportions, landscapes, still-life, and more!
Portfolio in Human Figure: Render the human figure in a variety of mediums including charcoal, pastels, ink and acrylic while studying from a live model. 
Portfolio in Comics & Character Design: Learn how to design original characters & tell visual stories using various illustrative mediums & comic techniques.
Portfolio in Animation: TBD
Portfolio in Film: TBD
Portfolio in Digital Illustration: Create art for your digital portfolio including illustrations, photo-manipulations, character art, and animation.
Intermediate Portfolio in Drawing & Painting: Refine your observational rendering skills to develop a fine art portfolio through drawing, painting, and mixed media!
Advanced Portfolio in Drawing & Painting: Develop a stunning portfolio that stands out to top art schools through the creation of original conceptual artwork.
Senior Project: Reach your highest level of achievement at The Art Effect through an advanced mentoring and portfolio development course designed to help earn top scholarship awards by developing a strong body of artwork.

Fall Classes Interest Form

High Contrast International Juried Exhibition Artists

Eliot Allen, Portland, OR

Hale Allen, Philadelphia, PA

Destiny Arianna, Wappingers Falls, NY

Greg Bahr, Fort Worth, TX

Angelica Banales, Rowland Heights, CA

Monica Banks, San Francisco, CA 

Desmond Beach, New York, NY

Rebecca Beach, Windsor, CO

Stacy Bogdonoff, New York, NY

Carol Boram-Hays, Columbus, OH 

Harrison Brisbon-Mckinnon, Poughkeepsie, NY

Paula Castillo, Brooklyn, NY

Natalie Christensen, Santa Fe, NM

Kayla Corradi, Califon, NJ

Meghan Crandall, Seattle, WA

Serena Domingues, Lagrangeville, NY 

Ellen Jouret-Epstein, Germantown, NY

Megan Mickael, Palos Verdes Estates, CA

Hilary Nylander, Marshall, NC

Anais Ost, New York, NY

Spencer Owen, Port Wentworth, GA

Canon Parker, Bozeman, MT

Jack Reilly, Lahaina, HI

Edward Shmunes, West Columbia, SC

Jerry Wein, Milton, NY

Yunqui Yang, New York, NY

The Art Effect’s COVID-19 Safety Plan

(last updated 3/1/2022)

To ensure safety for all of our students and their families, The Art Effect has worked hard to create programming environments which are safe, sanitary, and responsive to the shifting needs of these uncertain times. Beginning Wednesday March 2, in accordance with the CDC stating Dutchess/Ulster County as an area of low transmission and the NYS Governor’s office lifting the mask mandate, wearing masks will be optional for all staff, and students will no longer be required to wear masks inside each of our buildings. (except in special cases, please contact us 845.471.7477).

In addition to securing the safety of our employees in accordance with directives issued by the NYS Governor’s Office, The Art Effect is providing the safest in-person programming experiences possible for the students and families we serve with the plan laid out below.

As new requirements and policies are put in place we will update our safety plan accordingly and provide notice to families enrolled in our programming.

For the health and safety of our staff and students, our COVID protocols will continue to include the following:

  • Everyone sanitizes or washes hands before and after each class/activity.
  • If your child feels sick, please keep them home. Students who report feeling sick during the day will be asked to call a caregiver to pick them up. 
  • We will work to maintain a safe social distance when necessary to continue to help stop the spread of germs.
  • Where possible, individually packaged supplies will be used. All tools, supplies, surfaces, and seating gets sanitized at the end of the day.
  • If a student or students’ immediate family member (with whom they have daily contact) tests positive for COVID-19, we ask that the student stay home. Should a teacher (or student) test positive for COVID-19 while in contact with students, we will notify families immediately.

Teen Visions 2021 showcases an incredible summer

Over 90 people joined us at the Trolley Barn Gallery for The Art Effect’s Teen Visions in-person opening last Friday, September 10, 2021, where members of the community, young artists and their families, and The Art Effect staff celebrated an incredible showcase of work from the summer. The show features over 70 pieces of artwork by teen artists from a number of different summer programs at The Art Effect, including Spark Studios, MADLab, the Junior Art Institute, and the Summer Art Institute.

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Remarks from Executive Director Nicole Fenichel-Hewitt and program heads David Wong, Paul Thompson, Rick Price, and Michael Hollick highlighted the creative journeys youth undertake in The Art Effect’s programs each summer. Artists from each program spoke briefly about their personal experiences and takeaways from their summers making art. The Teen Vision Virtual Artist Talk will feature a more in depth Q&A with artists from the showcase on September 29 from 7–8pm. Simultaneously on display at The Trolley Barn Gallery through October 2, Mary Haddad’s Black Lives Matter mural was also highlighted at the Teen Visions opening when Mary Haddad spoke about the genesis of the mural and working with teens at Oakwood Friends School this past year on its creation. Teen Visions will remain up on view through October 2, 2021 with gallery hours during the week and each weekend. The gallery is open Wednesday through Friday from 2–5pm and on Saturdays from 12 to 4pm. If you aren’t able to visit the gallery in person for the show you see all of the amazing work on display by visiting our virtual gallery for the show here. For more information on this and upcoming exhibitions visit:

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National Coloring Book Day

Grab your crayons, markers or colored pencils, it’s National Coloring Book Day and we are sharing these incredible printable coloring pages from one of The Art Effect’s talented alum, Stephanie Weinger today! Stephanie is a Natural Science and Children’s Illustrator, a current member of the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators, and a graduate in Illustration from Moore College of Art and Design. She currently working to buil her brand, Animals Everywhere. Print your pages, use your creative flair and share your creations with us on Facebook or Instagram @thearteffect #thearteffect [pdf-embedder url=”” title=”AAD Coloring Pages”]