Thank You! Here's how you can stay involved in the BDC.
Thank you for making our campaign a success!
More than 416 people raised $34,977 on Kickstarter. Thank you to everyone who shared our campaign on email, Facebook and Twitter. and to those of you who supported us offline by sending checks. The BDC is a 501(c)3 non-profit and we thrive on the generosity of individuals donors like you.
Still would like to make a tax-deductible contribution? Go to bronxdoc.org/donate or send a check to “Bronx Documentary Center.”
At 3:52 pm today, our Kickstarter campaign officially closes. So many of you have helped us not only surpass our goal, but spread the word about the BDC. And by making this gift to us, you’ve touched a diverse group of people.
You’ve made it possible for folks like Ed to develop passion and a sense of purpose.
You’ve given Arianna and other kids in our after school program a chance to see the world differently.
Prior to becoming involved with BDC, I knew only a few of my neighbors. I landed in Melrose in 2008 because of the area’s reasonable rent and easy access to my office in Lower Manhattan.
The perfectly manicured Victorian building that presently houses BDC was an object of curiosity around the neighborhood, with it’s first floor windows hidden by corrugated metal for as long as I’d lived in the Bronx. In early Fall 2011, the metal barricades came down to reveal what would become the gallery, and around the same time I happened across an online invitation to BDC’s first show–”Visions”, Tim Hetherington’s last work from Libya.
Amazed that I would be able to see Hetherington’s work in my own neighborhood, I rallied some friends and we came to the opening. I was thrilled that this place existed only four blocks from my apartment. I came back the next day determined to get involved in any way possible.
The BDC is unlike any venue in the South Bronx (or New York for that matter): photographers, journalists, artists, filmmakers, well-known and unknown, share local, national, and international stories in a very intimate setting. It’s refreshing to have a place like BDC to get to know neighbors, and to be presented with subject matter that sparks conversation on a variety of topics.
Additionally, through efforts of volunteers and community members who meet at the center on weeknights after work, the center has become a haven for storytellers focused on perfecting their craft. Through discussions held in the gallery at BDC, I have learned new ways to critically assess my work and elevate the quality of my own creative projects.
The BDC, with unwavering support from a passionate and talented volunteer staff, has been able to bring some truly fantastic events to my neighborhood. Because of introductions made in my nearly three years volunteering at the BDC, Melrose is now my community instead of the place I commute home to. With the help of your donations to the Kickstarter campaign, BDC will continue to tell stories, and connect more members of the community to each other and to the world.
(above: Karah installs wall text for a recent exhibition at the BDC)
A message from Ross Kauffman, Academy Award-winning director:
"The BDC is a place that combines the best parts of the spirit of New York City - reinvention, commitment, energy and vitality and a melting pot of people from all walks of life.
The BDC brings the top documentary photographers and filmmakers from around the world straight to the Bronx. The mix of professional artists, children, teenagers, parents, and the people of the Bronx give the BDC a rare mix of people that you won’t find anywhere else in the world. It’s truly unique and inspiring. I haven’t seen anything like it before.
In the middle of brunch today, I got a call from Mike, followed by a flurry of texts from staff and volunteers with the good news that we reached our $30,000 goal on Kickstarter. We are all so excited.
We want to thank everyone who has donated, tweeted, blogged, and emailed to support the campaign and spread the word.
The BDC is a 501(c)3 non-profit that depends on the generosity of individuals like you. And with eight days left, there is more we can raise! It’s not too late to make a tax-deductible gift which will bring in-depth discussion and thought-provoking film and photography to wider audiences.
It’s been so moving to have all of your support.
With gratitude and appreciation, Danielle and the team at the BDC
And they’re not the only one’s who love BDC–Meet Arianna and Sister Patrice from Immaculate Conception School
Says Arianna, age 12:
I go to photography class at the Bronx Documentary Center or BDC and it is amazing.
I like this this for mainly three reasons. One is it is really fun. You learn different ways to take pictures and learn how to do it from different angles. You learn many new things. Second, it gives you a chance to become a better photographer if you like photography.
Last of all, it is fun and you meet different people. You also get to take pictures of different things. Like today, we took pictures of corner stores and even though it sounds really boring it was actually pretty fun. We even got hot chocolate! Well, only because it was cold. So you see, in several ways this photography class is great.
Says Sister Patrice:
Our afterschool program is for parents who need care for their children during after school hours. We provide enrichment programs for students in grades Pre K through 8th grade.
The photography club sponsored by the BDC has been a success because it teaches students to be observant And to care about their environment through reflection on what they observe. That is transformative.
The BDC is a light in our neighborhood. It provides a cultural dimension in a deprived Community. It gives the residents a sense of pride that the BDC chose this area to establish itself.
You can help us make #photo4all. 11 days to go. $4,000 to raise. Make a tax-deductible gift today.
Meet Ed Alvarez, BDC volunteer. Help make #photo4all.
Dear Friends of the BDC,
One morning, I was in bed recovering from a bad cold when I put the TV on to distract myself. I turned to Bronx12 News and saw a segment about an exhibit at the BDC. The exhibit (Seis del Sur) was about six Bronx photographers who took pictures of the South Bronx during the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s.
I hadn’t heard of the BDC at that point, but I recognized one of the photographers – Ricky Flores – from my old neighborhood of Longwood Avenue. It made me feel good to see a brother from Longwood Avenue excel at his craft.
I then remembered that Ricky had photographed a few friends and me back in 1983 and I wondered if the photo still existed. I reached out to Ricky and reunited with him at the opening of the Seis del Sur exhibit soon after. Seeing Ricky and that photo definitely brought back some memories of that time 25 years ago. The exhibit was also an amazing experience and left me wanting more.
I began attending photo classes at the BDC and started to look at photos differently. They were no longer flat two-dimensional images to me; they were photos with stories to tell.
The BDC awakened me. Prior to coming here, I was so focused on my daily routine of going to work and paying bills that nothing else outside of my world mattered much. But since coming here, I’ve learned about the struggles and injustices that people are subjected to in another countries around the world. I’ve developed a passion for photography and continue to get better, even when it is challenging.
I’m grateful to have this space in the South Bronx. The BDC is a valuable treasure in our community. It is always welcoming and resourceful. Usually, an educational environment like this is usually found in Manhattan, but I say the BDC is right where it belongs, in the Bronx.
If you believe in photo for all, no matter where you live, join our Kickstarter campaign by making a tax-deductible gift:www.bronxdoc.org/kickstarter.
BDC Strong, Bronx Strong, Ed Alvarez
PS – 25 years ago, the Bronx was burning. Crews were forming, drug use was becoming widespread, and the AIDS epidemic was spreading. Now the Bronx is rising and it shows in our cultural diversity. That’s what I love most about it. Support the BDC, a space that contributes to the cultural diversity of the Bronx by making a gift at www.bronxdoc.org/kickstarter today.
"We proudly support the BDC efforts to make photography and film available to audiences everywhere. Our son Tim worked tirelessly to bring attention to the plight of individuals in often-ignored corners of the globe. We feel that the BDC’s mission to educate a new generation of photographers and filmmakers is very much in keeping with Tim’s spirit and work. Please support the BDC’s upcoming programming with a donation on Kickstarter."
We are grateful for the remarkable outpouring of love and respect for Matt, and your kind offers of support during this devastating time. Matt’s impact on this world was profound, and his death is a tragic loss for us all.
There have been a number of spontaneous gatherings to celebrate Matt’s life around the country, and we are grateful that so many of his dearest friends found comfort in joining together to remember Matt and share their grief and pain at the shock of his untimely death.
We are planning two celebratory memorial services to remember Matt and we welcome all of his family and friends to join us for both or either of these occasions. One will be held in his birthplace and childhood hometown of Middlebury, Vermont, on Saturday, April 12. And one will be held in his beloved Brooklyn, New York, on Thursday, April 17.
The April 12 memorial service will be held at 3:00 p.m. at Mead Memorial Chapel (75 Hepburn Road) on the Middlebury College campus. A reception will follow at Kirk Alumni Center (217 Golf Course Road) overlooking the Green Mountains. Friends are encouraged to gather later that evening at Matt’s favorite local watering hole, Two Brothers Tavern (86 Main Street) to share stories and remembrances.
The April 17 memorial service and reception will be held at the Picnic House in Prospect Park (3rd Street/Prospect Park West entrance). An adopted tree in Prospect Park will be named in Matt’s memory and listed on the Park’s Commemorative Tree Register.
For information on places to stay or questions about the Vermont services, please contact Erik Shonstrom: firstname.lastname@example.org.
For information on places to stay or questions about the Brooklyn services, please contact Erin Owens: email@example.com.
Information on a legacy fund being established in Matt’s honor will be shared closer to the time of the services.