for everyone a garden VIII

artist David Hartt

Artist David Hartt shows a scale model of Norris Square built by students at the Norris Square Neighborhood Project during the summer of 2017. Photo by Steve Weinik.

  • location About the Project
  • Neighborhood

    Center City

  • completion date

    November 20, 2017

About the Project 

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

David Hartt spent 2017 working in collaboration with the Norris Square Neighborhood Project (NSNP), an organization that provides green space and youth education to local residents. 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 the gardens maintained by NSNP as connected to both Philadelphia’s founding vision as a “Green Country Town” and the neighborhood’s longstanding investments in their own improvement through greening. Hartt and his collaborators 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, their film imagines Norris Square in 50 or 100 years as forested cityscapes. According to Hartt, the film is an inadequate monument that memorializes the time he spent working with the youth here and their shared vision of a possible future.


Major support for Monument Lab 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. Lead corporate support provided by Bank of America. Generous additional support provided by the National Endowment for the Arts.

For a full list of funders click here.