GARLiC Grows In The Hill

Monday night marked the opening of GARLiC, an art initiative in the Hill to encourage green artistic endeavors while helping the environment.

GARLiC’s mission is to “encourage ‘upcycling’ and green art as a means to reduce consumer spending, increase art appreciation, and help the environment by reducing municipal waste in ethnically diverse, low income, urban neighborhoods.”

The event took place on Lamberton Street on the second floor of Ascension in the Hill, a church where GARLiC will be renting out the space “for this fiscal year completely rent free, to see if I can get something going for this community,” said Sarah Raven, the program director.

Raven’s presented her idea to Christ Church downtown back in December. “They loved the idea. They own this property and were looking for an interesting program to occupy this space and that would benefit Hill residents.”

“We take art, beauty, and the environment very seriously, so we love what Sarah is doing. We’re very supportive of this because of how great of an impact it’s going to have on the community,” said Father David Cobb (pictured above with Raven) of Christ Church.

GARLiC will be holding classes throughout the week, including one on pine cone recycling. “You can take a pine cone that exists in nature and make something out of it. There’s so much waste in the community,” said Raven. There will also be open studio time on Saturdays.

Through the help of volunteers, they were able to transform the once unoccupied space into a creative place to “let families and children have a chance to go somewhere, explore, and be creative,” said Raven.

One of these volunteers includes Rick Durance, who works at the Community Soup Kitchen on Broadway. “We think the Hill is a really important part of New Haven, and it’s really crucial to be here and be present. Plus, there are tons of way you make art from recycled materials,” he said. In the future, Durance hopes to eventually hold his own class.

Another volunteer was Chris McDaniel (pictured above with Raven), who gardened the entire property: “It was a mess before I cleaned it up. I hadn’t seen it since the end of fall, but it looks great!”

As for the meaning of GARLiC, the name stands for “Green Art Reclaiming Life in Communities.” Its organizers see the name as “a metaphor for the power of creation. Members of GARLiC will explore together the needs of society and will offer hope through a meaningful outlet.”

Ariela Martin, an Independent contributing reporter, is a student at Cooperative Arts & Humanities High School.

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posted by: Josiah Brown on April 26, 2013  5:12pm

Thanks for this article on what sounds like a creative endeavor.

It happens that New Haven art teacher Amy Migliore-Dest, formerly of Betsy Ross Arts Magnet and now of ESUMS, developed a curriculum unit called “Is It Trash? Sculpture That Recycles,” in a 2010 seminar on consumer culture led by Yale History and American Studies professor Jean-Christophe Agnew:

That is one of three units that Amy Migliore-Dest has prepared as a Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute Fellow.  She also developed the following units:

  *Connecting art and poetry, in a 2011 seminar on poetry led by English professor Lanny Hammer:

  *“Using Pop Art Imagery To Inspire Healthy Eating,” in a 2007 seminar on “Health and the Human Machine” led by Biomedical Engineering professor W. Mark Saltzman:

That 2007 unit was one of four interdisciplinary units prepared on health topics by a team of Betsy Ross colleagues collaborating in a seminar.  The others were: Marisa Ferrarese Asarisi (math teacher); Grace Malangone Romano (grade 5 teacher); and Crecia Cipriano (French teacher).

Numerous additional units that teachers have developed as Fellows, on a wide range of subjects across the curriculum (including various environmental science topics), are available for non-commercial, educational purposes: