Friday, January 27, 2012

Calling All Artists and Educators: Art To End Violence, from SOS Crown Heights

The fantastic folks at SOS Crown Heights have announced their second-annual "Arts to End Violence" Contest, which offers cash prizes to artists under 20 in three mediums (2-D, video, and t-shirt design). If you work with youth in Brooklyn, share this great opportunity with them (complete guidelines are available here)!  SOS has also put out a call to professional and emerging artists in the area who are interested in using art "to spread the message of nonviolence at various venues in the Crown Heights Community" at the end of May. If you're part of the Crown Heights creative community, considering getting involved, and help spread the word (complete guidelines for artist submissions can be found here).For more information about Arts to End Violence, check out the SOS Crown Heights website or read on below for their official release:

Save Our Streets (S.O.S.) Crown Heights is pleased to announce its second annual Arts to End Violence contest and art show. S.O.S. Crown Heights is a community-based effort to end gun violence in our neighborhood.

The Crown Heights community has made a commitment to end gun violence.  Merchants hang signs in their windows counting up the amount of days it has been since our last shooting; clergy members organize events to discuss violence in their congregations, teenagers speak to other teenagers about alternatives to violence; S.O.S. Outreach Workers and Violence Interrupters intervene whenever a shooting occurs to make sure no retaliatory actions take place. We invite the artists of Crown Heights and beyond to participate in our efforts to transform the neighborhood to make it a safe place for all. 

Last year the Arts To End Violence show brought artists together to share their own messages of peace and feelings about violence.  Some of the participants were established in their field and others were new to the creative process.  The results were a diverse group of powerful images and performances that invigorated the community efforts to reduce violence.

We are calling on artists of all ages to submit art for this project.    

Artists 19 and younger can submit in three categories (2-dimensional art, videos and t-shirt designs) to be eligible for cash prizes.

Professional artists are invited to submit pieces to be part of the Arts To End Violence collection to be displayed in local galleries and untraditional venues such parks, Laundromats and barber shops.

  • March 15th – Early Deadline (for feedback from the Selection committee - OPTIONAL)
  • April 5th – Final Deadline for Submissions
  • May 21st-25th – Festival and Gallery Openings
  • June 3rd-10th - Winners announced during “Cease the Fire, Increase the Peace” Week

We encourage artists, gallery spaces, teachers, art programs and media to call us at 718-773-6886 or email and speak with Anthony to learn more.

How SOS Works

S.O.S. Crown Heights provides immediate intervention whenever a shooting occurs in the neighborhood, reaching out to the victim, friends, and family to ensure that a retaliatory shooting does not take place. S.O.S. Crown Heights works closely with neighborhood leaders and businesses to promote a visible and public message against gun violence. The goal is to end the spread of violence by encouraging local voices to articulate that shooting is an unacceptable behavior.  At the end of 2011 shootings were down 38% in our catchment area.

More Information

Guidelines for the youth contest are available here, and the call to professional and emerging artists is here.


  1. awesome thank you for sharing!

  2. Sadly, today a kid of about seven outside a bodega on Franklin pointed his finger at me and pretended to shoot me. We need these initiatives. Thanks SOS.