Please take a few moments to read a letter from Acting Executive Director Niria E. Leyva-Gutiérrez about the impact of COVID-19 and our first-ever Virtual Uptown Arts Stroll programs.
Dear Friends and Family,
For the past 17 summers NoMAA has joined with local artists, businesses, community leaders and institutions to celebrate Northern Manhattan through the Uptown Arts Stroll/Paseo de las Artes.
This large-scale event brimming with art exhibitions, open studios, concerts, literary events and performances, attracts thousands of New Yorkers to the arts and culture corridor that spans West 135th Street to West 220th Street. The 2020 Arts Stroll/Paseo de las Artes, coinciding with the release of Warner Bros. Pictures premiere of In the Heights promised to be an even greater event!
If there is one thing that is certain, however, it’s that there is nothing certain. COVID-19 has turned our city upside down and we feel its effects daily. We worry about our family and friends, our health – physical and mental – and our finances. It is a collective struggle.
It is because of this uncertainty that NoMAA and its Board have made the difficult decision to fundamentally change this year’s Arts Stroll/Paseo. Rather than taking to the streets in celebration, we will be conducting a series of virtual events beginning this month and extending through the summer. We decided to pursue this route because we know that it is during these times, when we seek out acts of humanity and opportunities to express our deeply felt feelings, that we need the arts more than ever. As an organization dedicated to the arts, we recognize how critical it is to provide these spaces, albeit virtual, for our community to share, collaborate, and engage in trying to make sense of this world through our collective artistic expressions.
Please take a few moments to read our newsletter, which outlines NoMAA’s Virtual Arts Stroll programming, which kicks off with a Call for Submissions to artists wishing to participate in a 3-part exhibition series curated by local artist Patricia Miranda as well as a Technical Assistance Workshop, conducted by Patricia, designed to help artists promote their work in new virtual formats. At the end of the month we will launch #StayHomeOpenStudios, our weekly Thursday evening virtual exhibitions followed by Zoom artist chats to provide a forum for artists to share their work with the public and engage in meaningful conversations . NoMAA will continue to work diligently to develop a series of virtual programs that will build, uplift, and highlight our community using the hashtags: #artbridgingcommunity #UptownStrongNYC.
Finally, and on a personal note, when I took on this position as Acting Executive Director in January, filling Joanna Castro’s big shoes, I could never have imagined this scenario. Leadership transitions are always challenging. A pandemic certainly adds several layers of complexity. But I am heartened by our NoMAA team, Board, and friends. I am grateful for Joanna’s guidance. And I am especially inspired by our community – those working and creating from home and those out on the streets risking their lives to help others. I look forward to working with you all, albeit virtually, and I remain hopeful that we can take to the streets to celebrate our community soon!
Niria E. Leyva-Gutiérrez, Ph.D.
Acting Executive Director, NoMAA
Meet NoMAA’s new Acting Executive Director: Niria E. Leyva-Gutiérrez
For the last two decades, Niria has served as a university professor, curator and lecturer. She earned her Ph.D. in Art History at the Institute of Fine Arts (NYU), where she specialized in art from Spain and the Americas. Her family were long-term residents of Washington Heights and her grandparents were owners of Casals Photography Studio on St. Nicholas Avenue. She is a former resident of Inwood and currently resides in New Jersey with her husband and two sons.
UPTOWN ARTS STROLL HISTORY
Since 2003, the Uptown Arts Stroll has grown from a one-day event to a month-long celebration offering a wide variety of arts and cultural events north of West 135th Street. The Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance (NoMAA) in collaboration with local artists, businesses, community leaders and institutions, has produced the Uptown Arts Stroll since 2008.
Each year the Uptown Arts Stroll will feature open studios, art exhibitions, concerts, literary events, and performances during the month of June, throughout Northern Manhattan from West 135th Street to West 220th Street.
This website, created by NoMAA, provides an overview of the events and venues where the Uptown Arts Stroll will be held during the month of June.