David Hartt, for everyone a garden VIII

David Hartt

In collaboration with Caseem, Vicky, Sam, Gabby, Ashanti, Nadir, Davida, Carlos, and Anthony


for everyone a garden VIII (2017)

Exterior: 3M Scotchprint; Interior: monitor, digital media player, and digital video 


David Hartt worked in collaboration with the Norris Square Neighborhood Project (NSNP), an organization that provides green space and youth education for residents of North Philadelphia. In particular, Hartt partnered with youth from NSNP’s Semillas del Futuro summer program to create a film that explores the connections between city planning, community gardens, and civic engagement. Hartt was initially inspired by NSNP’s gardens as a connection to Philadelphia’s founding vision as a “Green Country Town” and to the neighborhood’s long-standing investments in greening. Hartt set up a studio in the NSNP building on North Howard Street, adjacent to Norris Square. During the production process, Hartt and his collaborators constructed a room-sized model of the neighborhood, and asked, “Who participates in the process of making a city and a neighborhood and how can we imagine a more inclusive future?” To approach these prompts, the film imagined Norris Square in fifty or one hundred years. According to Hartt, the film is an inadequate monument to the time he spent working with the youth and their shared vision of a possible future. The film was shown in the Norris Square Lab, with a large image of the youth cohort with their model of the park installed on the lab’s north-facing outer wall.


Artwork: David Hartt, in collaboration with Caseem, Vicky, Sam, Gabby, Ashanti, Nadir, Davida, Carlos, and Anthony

Project Manager:Cathy Harris

Partners: Mural Arts Philadelphia, The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, The City of Philadelphia, Philadelphia Parks & Recreation, and the Norris Square Neighborhood Project. for everyone a garden VIII was presented as a part of Monument Lab: Philadelphia (Citywide Exhibition, 2017).

Major support for Monument Lab 2017 projects staged in Philadelphia’s five squares provided by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage. An expanded artist roster and projects at additional neighborhood sites made possible by the William Penn Foundation. Generous additional support provided by the National Endowment for the Arts. Full list of exhibition sponsors.