Number of Participants: 10
Hours Donated: 4
Value of Time Served: $338
Event Type: Children & Youth
Date: April 5, 2021
In most cases, artistic works that have been painstakingly rendered are saved or hung on a wall or placed in a portfolio. For Wantagh High School members of the Art Honor Society, leaving art on a park bench or among stacks of books at the local bookstore for someone to take is a community service.
The honor society’s Art Abandonment Project has been a clever way of participating in a community service activity together, teacher Krista Hagan said. She explained that the students can render art singularly while working as a group in their community service efforts.
Student-artist Madeline Rose said members have not been able to participate in community service projects, as required by the honor society. The students were looking for a way to be safe, but at the same time, serve the community. “We came up with a way to do art on our own and share it in a noncontact way. This way, we are able to give others joy in these hard times,” Madeline said.
Participant Maylani Lee said she has left art on a park bench, enclosed within a plastic bag with the message “Take me, I’m yours.” She explained that if the person who takes the art has an Instagram account, they can take a selfie with the artwork and tag the honor society in a post.
Ms. Hagan explained, for example, that one art piece of a nurse donning a superhero mask was picked up by the employee of a local hospital and is now in a nurses’ dressing room and serving as inspiration for essential workers.
“Another piece of art was dropped off in Teaneck, New Jersey, so we will never know how far that artwork will travel,” Ms. Hagan said.
“Every piece of art will have its own journey,” Principal Dr. Paul Guzzone said. “The students don’t know the impact of their charitable actions.”
A: Left, Wantagh High School Principal Dr. Paul Guzzone and, right, art teacher Krista Hagan are pictured with Art Honor Society members and Art Abandonment Project participants (center, l-r) Madeline Rose and Maylani Lee.
B: Wantagh High School art student Heather Sheridan’s art was found in the grass with a message as part of the Art Abandonment Project.
C: Art Abandonment Project Participant Savannah Barreira’s rendering of a nurse in a superhero mask became the inspiration to other nurses as it hangs in a locker room.
D: Shane Adams, an art student at Wantagh High School, abandoned his artwork in Teaneck, New Jersey.
E: As part of the Art Abandonment Project, Art Honor Society President Arielle Combs made tiles and placed them in a bag that said, “Take me.”
Photos courtesy of the Wantagh School District