c. Amanda Williams and Olalekan Jeyifous

Artists Selected for Chisholm Monument

April 24, 2019

In an exciting announcement for the Prospect Park community, the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs and women.nyc announced that artist team Amanda Williams and Olalekan Jeyifous has been selected to design the park’s new monument to Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman elected to serve in Congress and a Brooklyn hero.

“Prospect Park Alliance is thrilled to welcome this important monument to Shirley Chisholm to the park,” said Sue Donoghue, president of Prospect Park Alliance. “It will be the focal point of the Alliance’s Ocean Avenue and Parkside Avenue entrance and perimeter restoration, and we look forward to working with the artist team to create a beloved destination for our diverse community to enjoy in Brooklyn’s Backyard.”

Renderings released show the team’s proposal for the monument that will grace Parkside Plaza. The design, called Our Destiny, Our Democracy, was selected through the City’s Percent for Art program. In the coming months, with additional community input and public review, the design will be developed to best suit the public and the park landscape. The monument is the first to be commissioned as part of the She Built NYC program, which seeks to expand representation of women in the City’s public art collection. The Shirley Chisholm monument will be installed in Prospect Park by the end of 2020.

“She Built NYC is transforming public art in our City by honoring the contributions of women who helped build and shape it,” said First Lady Chirlane McCray. “Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm’s dynamic leadership and activism continues to inspire all who learn her story and her service deserves public recognition. This artwork will be bright, bold, and makes a statement – just like Chisholm herself.” 

This monument, which was announced in late 2018, will be a critical part of Prospect Park Alliance’s $9.5 million restoration of the Parkside and Ocean Avenue perimeters and entrance to the park, which is made possible through $6.7 million in funding by Mayor de Blasio, $2 million in funding from Borough President Eric L. Adams and $750,000 in funding from Council Member Dr. Mathieu Eugene. This large-scale restoration by the Alliance will include new sidewalks and paving, new historic lighting and street furniture, the planting of new trees and the addition of a protected bike lane. This project continues the Alliance’s work to restore the perimeter of the east side of the park, including the Flatbush Avenue perimeter, which is also being funded by the Borough President, as well as Council Members Laurie Cumbo and Dr. Mathieu Eugene. See more on the Capital Projects Tracker.