11-16 NOVEMBER 2019

The School of Art and Design

Derek Johnson – Director 

55 members of the School of Art and Design have returned from an incredible 5-day residential in New York City, USA. The trip was packed and fast moving – early morning starts and walking many miles each day – covering the breadth of Manhattan through to the far south of Brooklyn.

It was a truly inspiring, demanding, happy and simply fantastic week. 

Day One (Monday 11.11.19): The coach left the WSC car park for Heathrow at 01:45am. By the end of that long day we had arrived in America, checked into the iconic Hotel Pennsylvania, marvelled at Times Square and viewed the city from the 86th floor of the Empire state Building at night. Phew and wow!

Day Two (Tuesday 12.11.19): early start to catch the first ferry to Liberty Island to see the Statue. Then back and up Broadway to Wall Street to Trinity Church, We then cut across to the 911 memorial and Freedom Tower. Shopping at Century 21 and lunch. We then progressed up the city to a shopping hit at street fashion store Hard Turn Bak and a photoshoot at Cortlandt Alley when many films are shot. The journey continued along Canal Street and then the subway up to the Hudson Yards to limb the new Heatherwick ‘Vessel’ sculpture and view the ‘100 Drawings’ exhibition at the Matthew Marks Gallery. Our annual ice skating madness then unfolded at the Rockefeller Centre in the evening.

Day three (Wednesday 13.11.19): straight down to ‘end of the line’ Coney Island on the ‘F’ train in south Brooklyn for photoshoot, beech combing and Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Restaurant. Then we travelled by subway to the original Junior’s Cheesecake Diner in Flatbush, to the East River, under the Manhattan Bridge and up onto the mile walk across the monumental Brooklyn Bridge. We then walked to lower Chinatown for a few hours of independent time in this fascinating cultural district as the sun fell and the nocturnal New York life awoke! In the evening we all had a group evening pizza meal together at Lombardi’s - America’s first pizzeria located in Little Italy – with 55 Italian vanilla sodas!

Day four (Thursday 14.11.19): Straight up to 72nd Street on the 1-train – to visit Strawberry Fields and walk through Central Park to The Metropolitan Museum to see and record to see masterpieces from throughout art history and contemporary exhibits. The group were fascinated (!) by Derek Johnson’s mini-lecture on the 3 Imperial Faberge Eggs on show. We then walked down 5th Avenue to 59th Street for lunch and some posh shopping opportunities.  From this we travelled on the 6-train to Grand entral Station (which all the students knew from the animated film ‘Madagascar!) to have fun at the whistering gallery and to do some practical artwork doing rapid over-layed rubbings of the literacy brass pavement plaques on Library Walk – for use back at college. In the evening the group travelled to Roosevelt Island on the Queensborough Bridge Cable car for night views of the Manhattan skyline. 

Day five (Friday 15.11.19): Independent time in the city! Students had until 16:00pm to explore the city in whichever way they decided. Students and staff visited a range of locations – in groups. Shopping, museums, cafes, parks, streets, film sets and photographing New York life. By this stage their city confidence and knowledge was vastly improved. 

The group flew back to the UK at 23:00pm and arrived back at the WSC carpark from where it all stared at 14:00 pm on Saturday 16.11.19  – with many, many amazing memories and traveling skills to last a lifetime.

James Redwood (L3 Interactive Media student) said ‘for me the highlight was the Empire State Building – the spectacular views and especially at night with the bright lights of New York. A once in a lifetime experience’


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