Inside Out Project Celebrates Diversities and Commonalities (VIDEO)

75 portraits of Clarkstown North students will be displayed on school buildings


Three-foot by four-foot black and white photos of Clarkstown North High School students on the sides of the school’s buildings greet passersby. The larger-than-life posters are part of a global effort called the “Inside Out Project” to celebrate people’s differences and similarities.  At Clarkstown North, the project has taken on an added dimension as part of the school’s anti-bullying and anti-cyber bullying initiative.

On Tuesday, students and staff were hanging posters as part of the program that Nancy Diamond, chair of the school’s art & technology department, said got underway in late October.

“The first 25 (posters) that went up were students from our IB (International Baccalaureate) program,” she explained.  “We used IB students as the starting point for the project.  That first hanging became almost a promotion for the project.”   

On November 2, a school wide assembly with the theme “One Tribe” was held to discuss participation in the global art project.  It lead other students and staff to register, have their photographs taken and enlargements printed.  Many who had digital images made also volunteered to help glue them onto the school’s brick exterior. 

Senior Jessie Alchen of New City said, “I thought it was really cool to see your face in a precarious place.”

Participating students committed to the following statement: “We stand strong and together against bullying.  We believe in acceptance, tolerance, and celebration of diversity in our school community.”

Senior Madison Lopez became interested in the project last year when it was discussed during an art class.

“I think the pictures are awesome,” said the Congers resident.  “I think it brings a sense of unity to the school.”

Even though it was a challenge, Diamond said 21 of the images were hung Tuesday morning.  Groups of three and four people were needed. 

“It’s difficult in that we’re on a 15-foot-ladder with rollers and a large sheet that blows in the wind,” she said.  “The kids have been awesome.  They’ve been coming on their lunch, free periods.”

Two other teachers are involved in the art and IB program.  Ceramics teacher Shaina Dunn and Drawing & Painting teacher Meredith Rickli are the IB community service coordinators.  IB students are required to complete service and action projects and Dunn said this was a great opportunity.

“We wanted to visually show that we’re all unique and stand together and accept one another,” said Dunn. “For the school community I think those are really important.”

In total, 75 posters will be hung in eight different locations.  Many of them are visible from the streets surrounding the school.  They are made of very thin paper and adhered to the walls with a combination of homemade paste and commercial wallpaper paste that will disintegrate naturally. 

Students contributed $10 toward the poster cost and the Inside Out Project organization matched that amount.  Diamond is not aware of any other nearby displays.  Across the United States, there are 379 groups and 7,920 participants.

World-renowned artist JR founded the project in order to tell the story of individual identities around the world.  INSIDE OUT is a large-scale participatory art project that transforms messages of personal identity into pieces of artistic work. Upload a portrait. Receive a poster. Paste it for the world to see.

Lisa McLoughlin December 14, 2011 at 03:31 PM
Btw, my daughter just graduated from NYU's Studio Art program Summa Cum Laude so I feel I have enough "culture" and "global awareness" to recognize egomaniacal communist/socialist propaganda vs. REAL art. Think of all of the huge photographs of Mao plastered all over China. The entire POINT of the project was lost by only using IB student work. Why are only the IB students ENTITLED to project their faces to the outside world? Hmmm? Isn't Northview a general PUBLIC school? If you are ONE TRIBE, why was it necessary to even mention IB in this project? Ahhhh! A conundrum! Does anyone else not see the hypocrisy of this "project"? Is the only "tribe" worth "showcasing" in this manner the IB Tribe? IB should be removed from every public school in the United States of America. Not a single additional taxpayer dollar should go to support this UNESCO social manipulation tool. Enough is enough!
Chris Pumphrey December 14, 2011 at 03:37 PM
Frankly I'm still lost ... I don't get it.... took photo, enlarged, glued to school building. Guess that makes me an Artist too. So how does this help Stop Bullying ??? In my day, if you got Bullied you popped him in the mouth and he stopped. Now, we teach kids to be non-violent towards and to understand those that are violent toward them first ... and the Schools are afraid to punish offenders .... while those starting the violence have no incentive to stop being violent. So now the kids that are bullied can be nothing more than perpetual victims and then those same picked on kids end up trying to kill themselves. And the "smart educated makers of Policy" can't figure out why these kids are killing themselves and so they institute more of the same feel good understand your attacker education. In the good intention to stop the violence, but that back fires and actually fosters more violent forms of violence. the road to Hell, is paved with good intentions.
Chris Pumphrey December 14, 2011 at 03:43 PM
And for those that argue that because technology has changed then the dynamic has changed ..I say that is a easy cop-out because people have not changed one bit. If a bully using the internet had reason to believe that they would be confronted in person at school for their cyberbullying they would be less likely to do so. Bullies are by nature Cowards ... and those that protect them instead of standing up for the victims, and those that would punish the victims for defending themselves while fearig a lawsuit from a Bully's parents are also Cowards and have no Moral Fiber or ethical foundation.
Rebecca Giglio December 14, 2011 at 04:14 PM
Great job Clarkstown North!
Clarkstown Student December 15, 2011 at 12:46 AM
For those of you saying that it is wrong that it's only available to IB students, you obviously missed something in the article. I go to Clarkstown North and they started with the IB students to set an example, but it is now open to everyone. I love the pictures- they make the school feel personal and unified.


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