16. The NYC Parks Renaming Project: Celebrating Black Leaders
In honor of Black History Month, NYC Parks will present The NYC Parks Renaming Project: Celebrating Black Leaders at the Arsenal Gallery in Central Park. The exhibition will highlight some of the parks and park features recently renamed by the NYC Parks’ department to commemorate the Black experience in New York City.
Beginning with a pledge by the department in June 2020 to stand in solidarity with the Black community in its fight to end systemic racial injustice, the agency has since gone on to name 28 park spaces in acknowledgment of the legacies of Black Americans. Some of the selected sites featured in the exhibition include the Gil-Scott Heron Amphitheater in St. Mary’s Park, the Malcolm X Promenade in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, and the Sandy Ground Woods in Fairview Park. To depict this, historical and contemporary images of the spaces will be placed side by side with accompanying text explaining the park’s backstory — prompting reflection on the progress that has been made and the work that still remains to be done.