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1st Street Mosaic Project

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1st Street Mosaic Project
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The 1st Street Mosaic Project artist team is engaging children, youth in middle school, adults, and local teens and college students in the design and installation of a mural on the 150’ wall on the 600 block of 1st Street in Ithaca, NY’s Northside Neighborhood. We are reusing and recycling materials donated by the community, combined with new creations to celebrate Plants as Food, from food chain science to local agriculture.


Community Creating:

This mural is installed on a concrete wall belonging to the City of Ithaca, with the endorsement of the City’s Public Arts Commission. It faces the wonderful grounds of the Ithaca Sciencenter, a hands-on museum for young children. The overarching theme for the mural is Plants as Food. Design and installation is being completed in sections, each with a different set of community partners and specific theme. The first section, Power Plants, went up August 23 and 24, 2014 with the help of incoming undergraduates at Ithaca College. The designl was informed by 6th graders at nearby Boynton Middle School studying the Food Web. Individual feature tiles were created at Boynton and through community tile-making events. The first is sponsored by the Tompkins County Festivals Program and focuses on native food plants.

In 2015, we collaborated with Ithaca's Childrens' Garden on the theme Gaia's Garden. This coincided with the 10th anniversary of the installation of their feature sculpture, Gaia, a giant snapping turtle garden piece and mascot for their programs. The community team included two groups of Ithaca Youth Bureau summer employees, the Cornell Plantations Environmental Education, children, family, and counselors at the Childrens' Garden, IC sttudent volunteers, and community volunteers.

The 2016 section, Plantastic!, features local agriculture. Again, Boynton Middle School students created over 100 tiles for the design. Flowers and animals were contributed by 4th and 5th grade students from Enfield Elementary School. Local artists and art educators contributed to the installation and the program was expanded for Youth Bureau Apprentices.

The tiles and mirrors going up on the wall are being donated by the community. Other material costs and general expenses have been supported through grants from the Community Arts Partners of Tompkins County, Tompkins Charitable Gift Fund, First Niagara Bank, Tompkins County Tourism Bureau, and the Alternatives Federal Credit Union, as well as individual donors.

Team Members: Wes Blauvelt, Leslie Carrere, Margaret Corbit, Louisa Sandvik, and Annemarie Zwack. Carla Stetson and Caitlin Chan participated in 2014.

Contact Us:

Web Site:


Support Us:

We have wonderful volunteers of all ages and generous members of the community donating unused tile and recycled commercial mirrors. What we need from our supporters are funds to purchase the glue that holds the wall up -- from concrete and mason's stain to printing costs and general expenses. Please consider a donation.


Make CHECKS payable to Artspire, a program of NYFA with 1st Street Mosaic Project in the memo line and mail them to:

1st Street Mosaic Project

143 Howland Rd

Spencer, NY 14883-9604

CREDIT CARD donations will be processed directly through the link at the top left of this page.

To make donations of MATERIALS, SUPPLIES, EQUIPMENT and other goods, please contact us via email and we will make arrangements to receive your generous gifts and to acknowledge them officially through Artspire.

We gratefully acknowledge the following supporters:

Ithaca Public Arts Commission

Community Arts Partnership

Tompkins Charitable Gift Fund

First Niagara Bank

Alternatives Federal Credit Union

Tompkins County Festivals Program

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County

The City of Ithaca

Ithaca College

Boynton Middle School

City of Ithaca Youth Employment Services (YES)

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