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Public Art for Public Schools


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Table of Contents



Chapter 1
Before City Unification: School Design and Decoration in the Early Years

Chapter 2
Dawn of a New Century: C. B. J. Snyder, Master Builder and Art Patron

Chapter 3
Beautifying Schools in the Progressive Era

Chapter 4
The New Deal Comes to Public Schools

Chapter 5
Modernism: Redefining Schools in the Post-World War II Years

Chapter 6
The Civil Rights Era and Beyond

Chapter 7
Reshaping Schools: Improved Design and Percent for Art

Chapter 8
Into the Twenty-first Century







About the Author

Michele Cohen is director for the Public Art for Public Schools program of the New York City School Construction Authority. She holds a Ph.D. in art history from the Graduate Center, City University of New York, and is the co-author with Margot Gayle of The Art Commission and the Municipal Art Society Guide to Manhattan's Outdoor Sculpture.

Stan Ries is an architectural photographer based in New York.

Michael R. Bloomberg is mayor of the City of New York.


"There is an extraordinary treasury of artwork, more than a century's worth, within the walls of city schools. But because it is scattered through all boroughs, in buildings not typically open to the public, there has been no way until now to appreciate the breadth of the collection or the depth of it."
-The New York Times

"In this book Michele Cohen takes a thoughtful and critical look at the exceptional history of public art in the city's public schools and reminds us how art shapes the minds and values of our children every day."
-Michael R. Bloomberg

"Broad in scope and relevance . . . The book strikes a pleasing balance between text and image . . . Cohen effectively summarizes a large, complex, and fascinating story."
-Public Art Review

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