Essence showcases New York City’s youth embracing their interests and differences through visual means. The realm of the conceptual mind of these artists allows for the viewer to exit the space with a heightened sensitivity to the world. 

Presented with 50 artworks made by New York City public school students, from a previous exhibition themed Simplicity in Complexity, curators Badiallo and Jeremy chose 16 artworks that embodied the distinct essence of the artists from 6th through 12th grade. 

This exhibition emphasizes how great things can come from teens when they are given the opportunity to be heard as they will take charge of leading the generations to come. While this is a safe space for teens, others are welcomed to witness their essence. 

In a Bag

Mia A.


Ringo in Gold

Dinah B.

mixed media on paper


Alana G.

gen pen

Different Stripes

Kayla H.

oil pastel and paint in paper


Chu Yi L.

oil pastel on paper

Level Up

Briana L.

acrylic paint and watercolor on canvas

Delighted Boy

Stella M.

charcoal on paper

Conflicting Emotions

Karen M.

linoleum print on paper

Running Thoughts

Daisy N.

ink on watercolor paper

Sneaker in Ink

Madeline P.

pen and ink on paper

City Lights

Jinhang R.

watercolor on paper

A Trebled Man

Imani S.

tempura paint

Mr. Z & Ms. S

Xin Qing S.



Icyss S.

digital artwork

Self Portrait

Justin W.

oil pastel on paper

Life is a Maze

Maggie Y.

watercolor and graphite on paper