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Seton Village Neighborhood Preservation Program (NPP) and South Orange Village:

South Orange, NJ – Seton Village Neighborhood Preservation Program (NPP) and South Orange Village are pleased to bring back ArtBender, an event that returns after a two-year hiatus.

“ArtBender is near and dear to my heart,” said Danni Michaeli, lead architect of ArtBender. “We look forward to welcoming the public to any and all of our many scheduled events. We have missed gathering to celebrate the enormous creative spirit of our community and there are so many ways to join in the fun this Saturday. Paint, draw, sing, dance, garden, and build!”

ArtBender is sponsored by Seton Village NPP, a grant South Orange received in late 2021 to invest in the Seton Village neighborhood and Irvington Avenue business corridor. Events will occur in Seton Village and all throughout South Orange. Nearly all events are free of charge and include morning Yoga at 133 Fairview Avenue, a Plant & Play program at Carter Park, and two art programs celebrating Pride including an art installation at Valley Street and Valley Plaza and a read-aloud art project at South Orange Public Library. A virtual poster making session is scheduled for 1 PM. Live music is planned at several locations throughout town.

For a complete list of events and performances, visit www.setonvillage.org/artbender-2022.

One of the anchor events at ArtBender will occur at the corner of Ward Place and Irvington Avenue. Last month, local artist Kathryne Hall was selected to design a community mural. The public is invited to help paint the mural between 10 AM – 2 PM on June 4.

Kathryne Hall

“We are very excited to see such a bright and joyful new mural being installed on the corner of Irvington Avenue and Ward Place. This location is optimal within the community as is it one of the most frequently travelled roads in South Orange with great visibility when walking along the corridor, ” said Summer Jones, South Orange Board of Trustee member and Seton Village resident. “ArtBender is the perfect opportunity to see this project realized and to highlight the vibrant artistic talent of our community.”

About ArtBender

ArtBender is a celebration of creativity and self-expression, happening in and around South Orange, NJ on June 4, 2022 (rain date June 5). Community members are encouraged to gather at “creativity hubs” by starting communal projects in neighborhoods throughout the town. Local businesses are also encouraged to host an arts event. Past ArtBender events have included painting, chalk street art, poetry writing, and music and dance performances.

ArtBender was founded in 2016 as a 24-hour arts marathon and fundraiser for Arts Unbound, a non-profit arts organization in Orange, NJ that was dedicated to the artistic achievement of people living with disabilities and seniors. Unfortunately, Arts Unbound closed its doors in 2019. This year ArtBender returns after a two-year hiatus and will include over thirty creative programs and performances.

About Seton Village NPP

Seton Village together with South Orange Village was awarded a five-year  Neighborhood Preservation Program (NPP) grant to invest in the Seton Village neighborhood and Irvington Avenue business corridor. This grant from the NJ Department of Community Affairs comes with renewable funding of $125,000 per year, for a total investment of $625,000.

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