Bridget Bartolini is a socially engaged artist, educator, and creator of the Five Boro Story Project, a program that produces free community events that bring New Yorkers together through sharing true stories and art inspired by our neighborhoods.
From a young age, Bridget loved listening to other people’s stories, but it wasn’t until she was studying Community Education in grad school that she learned about the power in the simple act of sharing personal stories. Inspired by her belief in the power of storytelling as a tool for social justice, her love for New York City, and her frustration with the lack of cultural programming in areas like her home neighborhood in Queens, Bridget launched the Five Boro Story Project in 2013. From organizing small story-sharing workshops to curating and producing large events with storytelling, poetry and music performances, Bridget’s creative process involves working with community members, organizers, activists, and artists to collaboratively create tributes to the people and places that make up our homes. Since 2015, Five Boro Story Project programs have particularly focused on gentrification and displacement, primarily working in neighborhoods where cultural history and memory are being erased and replaced, along with residents.
Bridget holds a Bachelors degree in East Asian Studies from Oberlin College (and, in what feels like a former life, lived in Tokyo) and a Masters degree in Family and Community Education from Columbia University’s Teachers College. She is excited to join OHMA and learn about oral history methodology, best practices, and archiving, and deepen her work with the Five Boro Story Project.