Here Is New York: Our 2012-2013 Annual Report | New Visions for Public Schools

Here Is New York: Our 2012-2013 Annual Report

The title of New Visions' latest annual report, "Here Is New York," is taken from E. B. White's famous essay of the same name. Like White's essay, our report is a paean to the city we love. It's also a spotlight on the incredible, diverse students who make up New Visions schools.




Our annual report features illustrations of five students by London-based documentary illustrator Olivier Kugler, whose work has been published in the Guardian (U.K.), the New York Times, Vanity Fair and more. Part journalist and part artist, Olivier is interested in the everyday lives of the people he meets in his travels. His work is both rigorous and whimsical, highlighting certain features of his subjects and allowing other details to melt into the background. The results are richly detailed and highly personal illustrations that grab a reader's attention.

Earlier this year, we invited Olivier to New York City to interview New Visions students and teachers. For 10 days, he visited our schools in all five boroughs, conducted nearly two dozen interviews and shot thousands of digital pictures. He got a taste of the variety of our schools and the diversity of our students. He then returned to London to create portraits of five students whose stories are emblematic of the students we serve.

Olivier grew up in a small village in the Black Forest in Germany, obsessed with comic books. Much like the comics of his youth, his work combines illustrations with text, an reveals an eye for curious or idiosyncratic details. "I am inspired by the world around me," he says. "Particularly the simple, banal thaing that are often overlooked."

Some of Olivier's most recent travels brought him to Cairo, Egypt, on the anniversary of the 2011 revolution; to Burkina Faso, to document living conditions of mine workers; and to Tehran, Iran, where he met an Iranian truck driver whom he accompanied on a weeklong trek across the country.

To his growing body of work, he now adds drawings of Pamela (pictured above), Sebastian, Kafoumba, Jonathan and Peteso--New Visions students who showed him the strength, resilience and determination of New York City public school students.