Department of Cultural Affairs NYCulture City of New York Department of Cultural Affairs NYCulture City of New York

Percent for Art

   Mike Mandel & Larry Sultan

Bulletin Board, Mosaic Mural, 2000


Bulletin Board

Completion Date:



Mosaic Mural




Children's Center for the Administration for Children's Services




Richard Dattner Architects

Sponsor Agency:

Administration for Children's Services

Design Agency:

Department of Design and Construction

Bulletin Board is located at the children's entrance to the Children's Center for the Administration of Children's Services. Children that require the intervention of the City for reasons of abuse or family violence are brought to this center as a transitional space until foster care can be provided for them. It is a safe haven where most children arrive at night and stay for little more than a day. Mike Mandel and Larry Sultan's mural is the first thing a child will see upon entering the building. The design is based on a child's bulletin board, with pictures of family and friends, of one's own drawings, and memories of proud accomplishments, ribbons and medals. There is a drawing of a house, colorful and full of windows to transition from the outer world inside and back again. There is a photo booth strip of pictures of a child having fun and making fun of being photographed. A bulletin board is a child's own space, where one pins up notes of one's own identity. The artists felt that if a child could connect with these references to the personal and familiar that he or she would find comfort and security and a sense of recognition of one's own personal experiences. The mural is fabricated with one-half inch porcelain tile, so that the image maintains a photographic quality from only a short distance away.

About the Artist...
Mike Mandel has been a practicing artist since receiving a Masters of Fine Arts degree from the San Francisco Art Institute in 1974. He grew up in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles during a period of expansion and transformation of the landscape that included the appearance of billboards, strip malls, and miles of freeways. This experience informs much of his work which questions the meaning of photographic imagery within popular culture and draws from snapshots, advertising, news photographs, and public and corporate archives. Mandel has translated much of this work into book form, self-publishing nine photo-based books since the early 1970s. For the past eleven years Mandel has been using the computer for his work and is interested in how the ancient medium of mosaic tile can be informed by the language of the pixel for photo-based ceramic tile mosaic works.

Larry Sultan has been working as an artist in the San Francisco Bay Area for over twenty-five years. For his individual and collaborative work he has received many grants and awards including a Guggenheim fellowship, 5 NEA fellowships, the Engelhard Award, the Louis Tiffany Comfort Foundation, among others. His recent photographic work, Pictures from Home, was published by Harry Abrams and has been exhibited nationally at the Museum of Modern Art, the San Jose Museum of Art, The Corcoran Gallery of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Currently Sultan is a Professor of Art at California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland. He is represented by the Stephen Wirtz Gallery in San Francisco and the Janet Borden Gallery in New York. Since 1990, Sultan's 25 year collaboration with artist Mike Mandel has turned to the creation of permanent artworks that are integrated into the architecture of buildings and address the communities in which they are situated. They have recently completed successful projects in California and New York.

Artist Quote...
"Our public artwork engages history, culture, myth, geography, politics, and neighborhoods, and translates these intertwined stories into a voice accessible to a community. In all of our work we realize this goal by tapping into the power of documentary. Photographs, artifacts, and people's own words can be translated to dramatically engage an audience with instances of history and human experience. We are known for our unique photographic ceramic tile mosaics. The artwork that results has presence, scale and accessibility. We begin, therefore with research, formulating an idea, and work in concert with all client communities, the architect, and all parties who have a stake in the message of the site. Once a design is approved we fabricate the mural in our own studio." -- Mike Mandel, 2001