Congratulations to #NLECommunity artist Shaun Leonardo (How Much Do I Owe You?, 2012)  on Assembly: an arts-based diversion program for court-involved youth organized in partnership with Recess and Brooklyn Justice Initiatives. 
Assembly is a nine-month pilot program operating from the Recess satellite space in Downtown Brooklyn, offering arts-based diversion programs which present alternatives to incarceration and other adult sanctions for court-involved youth. When participants complete the program prosecutors may close and seal their case avoiding an adult record.
The program is presented in partnership with Brooklyn Justice Initiatives, who recruits program participants at the court level, and Shaun Leonardo, the program’s lead teaching artist, and organizer. Leonardo will be joined by Salome Asega and Sable Elyse Smith who will serve as teaching artists in the spring and summer, respectively. 
In addition to this dedicated program, Assembly will grant each artist the opportunity to activate and add to the front gallery space cumulatively, working toward an evolving installation rather than a static exhibition. Program participants will have the opportunity to create a final project and curate a final exhibition combining their own work with that of the artists.
Assembly gallery activation launches Thursday, January 12 with Shaun Leonardo, whose body of work in video, drawing, documentation and performance, will occupy the storefront gallery, a point of departure for discussion during the educational diversion programs. The formal layout of the classroom and gallery will be porous, and an ideology of alternative pedagogy will shape the entirety of the space. After his three-month activation, Shaun will remain the lead educator of the Assembly diversion program for the duration of the nine-month pilot.  
Public hours are Thursdays – Sundays, 12 – 6pm.  For more information about Assembly and to sign up for updates, click here. 

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