The Town of Babylon announced on Wednesday the launch of an art initiative called the “Babylon Together Art Trail” to help beautify the local neighborhoods amid the health crisis.
The project kicks off with a giant mural that will be created by students of the Wyandanch High School Class of 2020. Around 20 students will be a part of the project and the theme of the mural will be focused around mental health.
The mural is expected to be approximately 12×90 feet outside of the HRHCare Health Center, located at 1556 Straight Path in Wyandanch. Town officials said it will be on the back, cement wall of the building.
Saint-Cyr Art Studio is facilitating the mural project, which will start in August and the mural is expected to take around five weeks to complete.
Town officials said the goal of the initiative is to beautify many frequented places and reconnect the community during the COVID-19 pandemic.
below is the design concept
Babylon Town Supervisor Rich Schaffer said he hopes this project provides a mental health break for those who participate in the art installation.
“I think this is a really great way of helping people with all of the mental health issues, the anxiety and the panic that has come up because of the quarantine and the virus,” Schaffer said. “So that’s why it’s important to focus on that.”
Matthew McDonough, director of the Babylon is Back Program — which provides additional support to businesses as they recover from the COVID-19 — said they chose the area because of the growing development.
“There are brand new apartments, brand new retail space, so that is a hot area,” McDonough said.
The Town of Babylon’s Local Development Corporation approved a $100,000 endowment to support the local arts community and ensure the public art displays have the proper funding to be created.
There will be several public art projects to be launched with the BCCA, including outdoor classes, drive-in concerts, and other mural paintings.
The first $20,000 of the endowment, in partnership with Babylon Citizens Council on the Arts, Inc., will go towards beautification projects of the town’s downtown areas, as well as programs that connect the community.
The funding is also part of the Babylon is Back initiative, and McDonough said the hope is that the public artwork will be an economic benefit to the surrounding businesses.
The project is a win-win situation for restaurant owners, retail shops, and local artists who want to get their work recognized.
“It’s a long-term project of permanent art in public space,” McDonough said. “They can stop, look at the artwork, and then go to a restaurant locally or go shopping, so that’s the idea.”