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This June, Nyack to Create a Unique Map

Artwalk's Flash Sketch Mob to tackle citizen cartography

Nyack will have a new village map unlike any other come June.

And this map won't be traced by a professional, or churned out by a computer program—it will done by Nyack artists.

As part of this year's Artwalk—a village-wide, seven-year tradition that transforms shops into art galleries for one weekend—local artist Bill Batson has pieced together a Flash Sketch Mob.

A handful of creative residents will gather at June 16 and be assigned a portion of the village to capture. They'll then have two hours to create their version of the region—and when time is up, each piece will fit together to form a single, sprawling and unique result.

"To my knowledge, nothing like this has been done before," Batson said. "Whatever we collect, it's going to be valuable."

Dozens have already registered for the event—folks of all ages are planning to add their watercolor, pen and ink, and charcoal productions to the pot.

Then, each individual creation will be scanned, and the final product will have a particularly special canvas—the side of a building on North Broadway.

Batson's Nyack Sketch Log is an ongoing project that spotlights the village's character through captivating drawings, and was the initial catalyst for the Flash Sketch Mob.

"I wanted to single-handedly map the village," he noted. "But one person can't accomplish that."

Another inspiration is Kris Burns, the artist-in-residence at the Edward Hopper House who organized last year's Hopper Happens festivities.

Presiding at the June event will be Nyack's mayor Jen Laird-White, who will ring Nyack Center's bell to start and end the drawing session.

"Nyack has a history of attracting great artists and supporting their work," she said.

Paulette Ross, owner of P. Ross and Artwalk director, noted the flash sketch mob fits perfectly with the festival's spirit. "The artwork that Bill’s event will produce will be a lasting tribute to the spirit of Artwalk," she said.

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The details

When: Saturday, June 16; 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. An exhibition will take place at 9 p.m.

Where: Nyack Center; the exhibition will be projected on a building wall at the corner of North Broadway and High Avenue.

Who: Artists of all ages and skill levels are invited to participate, Batson said.

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