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Middle School To Build "Life Cube" For Community Day
Posted 10/05/2016 05:08PM

If you write down your goals, you can make them happen.

Scott Cohen, the father of a Riverdale graduate and the creator of the Life Cube project, told Middle Schoolers today about how a trip to the Burning Man arts festival in 2003 inspired an idea that has begun to take hold across the country. "The art there is huge, and it is interactive, and it is engaging, and suddenly for the first time in my life I was experiencing art in a completely different way," he said. 

Cohen did not consider himself an artist, but he began to think about a large-scale installation dedicated to collaboration, community, and art as interactive experience. He returned to Burning Man in 2011 and created the first "Life Cube." The structure was an 8-foot by 8-foot cube, and visitors could write down their dreams and insert them in the box. At the end of the festival, the box burned to the ground as a hundred spectators watched.

As time went on, the Life Cubes became larger in size and in scope. In March, Cohen returned to Las Vegas for the third time to create a Life Cube. He visited schools, and thousands of students contributed to the wish-tag wall, decorated canvas squares, and created murals on satellite cubes that were sent to their schools. Now Cohen's goal is to take the Life Cube around the world.

At Riverdale, Middle School students will create artwork that expresses their goals and dreams as part of their annual Community Day on Friday. On Tuesday, construction of the cube will begin on the campus lawn. The installation will be up through Homecoming on Oct. 22. (This Life Cube will not be burned at the end.)

For Cohen, the mission of creating art that promotes aspirations and dreams is deeply rewarding. "If I could do this for the rest of my life, I would be extremely happy," he said. 

In a recent article for Medium, Cohen wrote about Life Cube. In the video below, he explains the idea to Riverdale students.


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Riverdale Country School

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Bronx, NY 10471

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