Mural painting | Contributed Photo
JERSEY CITY, NJ – A four-day festival with over 1,000 artists representing diverse mediums will be on display at more than 140 locations spanning the entire City beginning Sept. 29 in the 32nd annual Jersey City Art Studio (JCAST). This includes the return of curated bus and walking tours, interactive events, live paintings, kids’ activities, music and theatre performances, demonstrations, and “hidden gelleries.”
“This year, we’re excited to bring back the fully immersive in-person Art and Studio Tour experience, which has become the region’s premier arts and cultural event,” said Mayor Steven Fulop. “From JCAST to our Arts and Culture Trust Fund grants to attracting key investments that boost our local community and economy, we have seen significant progress through our efforts to revive arts and culture in Jersey City. JCAST is an unprecedented event to support further and showcase our talented local artists and arts organizations.”
Mayor Fulop will kick off JCAST 2022 with an opening reception that is free and open to the public from 6 to 9 p.m. on Sept. 29 at JCAST Headquarters in the Marion section of Jersey City. This event will include pop-up art experiences extending from Dey Street to Newark Avenue, including Canco Park and surrounding storefronts.
The festival will also feature food trucks, live DJs, and original artist merchandise for sale.
“There are so many diverse up-and-coming artists with raw talent that need a platform like JCAST to put the spotlight on their work and talent. For the upcoming Arts and Studio Tour, we are creating a pathway connecting one side of Greenville to the other to allow people to walk through the neighborhood and enjoy works of art created by their neighbors. If successful, we hope to establish a more permanent Greenville Arts Crossroads,” said Melida Rodas, a Multimedia Artist/Poet and JCAST Greenville Organizer. “Our Greenville Headquarters will be at the intersection of McAdoo and Sterling, where we’re inviting visual artists, poets, musicians, and the like to perform in a talent showcase on Oct. 1st and 2nd.”
JCAST 2022 will also feature a live outdoor community painting project for the first time. The City administration said the community mural hopes to encourage resident participation alongside more than a dozen professional artists. The mural will help clean, beautify, and enliven a large stretch of St. Paul’s Avenue just off Route 139.
The event will include an interactive stencil area community members can make various stencils and apply them to the wall. Residents can show up and participate on Saturday, Oct. 1, from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday, Oct. 2, 12-5 p.m.
“Since its humble and organic beginnings in 1990, JCAST has become a yearly highlight and important bridge for connecting artists and the wonderful art-loving community that is Jersey City!” added Mollie Thonneson from Pro Arts Jersey City.
According to the City administration, for every dollar invested towards boosting arts and culture on the local level, it has proven to yield an average of over $33 in return investments into the community. In addition, it said that numerous studies have found that the arts amplify the administration’s broader efforts of enhancing residents’ quality of life, fostering community, engaging the youth, benefiting local businesses, and improving mental health.
Christine Goodman, Director of Jersey City’s Office of Cultural Affairs, said that more artists participate every year in this JCAST event and attract more people to attend. “We’ve created an interactive experience like no other that spans all areas of Jersey City and offers free guided tours that are free and open to the public,” said Goodman. “We encourage everyone attending to take advantage of the free bike and walking tours offered on Saturday and Sunday.”