“Treasures of New York: Pratt Institute,” a PBS documentary now available for streaming, explores the great minds and bold ideas that have established Pratt as an art and design education powerhouse.
Originally aired around Pratt’s landmark 125th anniversary year in 2012, the program goes inside Pratt to discover its vibrant Brooklyn history through the eyes of the two men who “built” it; industrialist Charles Pratt, who founded the school in 1887, and Dr. Thomas F. Schutte, who has been articulating the Institute’s vision since he became the school’s President in 1993.
The film investigates Pratt's architectural and cultural impact through interviews with art and design luminaries such as Margaret Russell, editor in chief, Architectural Digest; Francis Morrone, architectural historian; and Paola Antonelli, curator of architecture and design, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA).
A highlight of the film comes from artist and Pratt alumna, Mickalene Thomas, whose work along with other Pratt alumni is in the collections of the Brooklyn Museum and MoMA. She shares personal insight from the perspectives of having been both a student and a professor at Pratt, and how she's inspired by Pratt's rich history of artistic talent.
Former Pratt student, celebrated writer, and Legends 2013 honoree Pete Hamill hosts “Treasures of New York: Pratt Institute.”
Image: The Library and Sculpture Park on Pratt's lush 25-acre Brooklyn campus. Image Credit: Josh Gerritsen.