Youth-Created Public Art Mural Unveiled at Walkway Over The Hudson

The latest public art mural created by Hudson Valley youth was completed last week by The Art Effect’s National Art Honor Society Chapter #2242 on the Highland side of the Walkway Over The Hudson State Historic Park. Titled “Connection,” the mural is located on two Royal Carting dumpsters, that were previously eyesores, in the parking lot adjacent to the visitor center on the Highland side of the Walkway. “Connection” is a visual representation of the Walkway connecting both sides of the Hudson River.

The beautiful mural depicting a bright and cheerful snapshot of the Walkway’s bridge was designed by NAHS member Rose VanBenschoten, a student at Arlington High School. Students including Emma Trezza, Jahnvi Mundra, Katia Estrada, Greta Laubscher, Saoirse Woods, Catarina Gilnack, Ryan Garcia, Juliana Sanchong, Julie Woods, Lilly Santora, Dalya Hanel Sheshany, and Fiona Shanahan each participated in the planning, brainstorming of design, preparing, and painting of the murals. The 12 members who participated in the mural painting attend high schools throughout the Hudson Valley including Poughkeepsie High School, Arlington, Our Lady of Lourdes, Oakwood Friends School, Roy C. Ketcham, Haldane, Wallkill, Warwick Valley, and New Paltz.

The students chose images such as the Poughkeepsie Post Office, the iconic gates into Vassar College, and the recognizable murder of crows that flock near the Mid-Hudson Bridge. To represent the Highland side, the students painted animals associated with the Hudson Valley such as bees, ducks, and fish. The psychedelic movement and colors of the sun’s rays were chosen by the students to create gorgeous rays that smile down and extend to both sides of the river. This project is supported by John Storyk of Walters-Storyk Design Group, Royal Carting, the Friends of the Walkway, and other volunteers from our communities.

This semester, National Art Honor Society students at The Art Effect also raised just under $400 for the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA) to purchase and prepare vital humanitarian aid and provisions for Ukraine by selling their own artwork printed on greeting cards at the Walkway Over The Hudson’s Mayfest event. They also participated in various park cleanups including the Community Matters 2 Pershing Park clean up.

Started by the National Art Education Association (NAEA) in 1978, the National Art Honor Society (NAHS) inspires and recognizes 9th – 12th graders who have shown an outstanding ability in art. The NAHS strives to aid members in working toward the attainment of their highest potential in art areas and brings art education to the attention of the school and community. The Art Effect is unique in offering this opportunity to arts-focused youth in the Hudson Valley.