Magic Box Productions
Media Arts Matters

*Visit "Tech Tips" for fun project tips and ideas!

Visual literacy, the language of the 21st century, is an essential tool for all students in the age of digital media. Magic Box is one of the few organizations to bring media arts instruction to children of all ages.

Photography and video are powerful digital communication tools, helping students make connections across all academic disciplines, think creatively
and make collaborative strategic decisions to solve problems.



New Videos
Click here to see a video of our student photographers at work behind and in front of the camera!
Click here to see a video of our students teaching other kids how to become
video reporters!


Focus 2014:

Photography Exhibition, Cocktails, Silent Auction, Networking & Surprises

May 6, 2014

Castle at Morningside, 100 Claremont Ave

6:30 - 9:30pm


What is FOCUS?

FOCUS is Magic Box Productions annual gallery show, featuring more than 50 pieces produced by Magic Box students. They are all New York City students, aged 7-17. The exhibit showcases the power of young artist eyes, as they fall on spaces, places and people of New York City.

Since 2004 Magic Box has served over 20,000 public school students, collaborated with schools and arts organization and become a thought leader in Media Arts. Focus is our thank you to our students and most importantly- our supporters who have helped us continue to grow and bring the talent of our students into FOCUS!

When is FOCUS 2013?

FOCUS will be held on Tuesday, May 6 at 6:30 pm.

Where will FOCUS 2013 be held?

FOCUS will be located at The Castle at Morningside on the Columbia University Campus. The address is 100 Claremont Ave, Harlem, NY

How much does it cost to attend FOCUS and where can I buy tickets?

Tickets to FOCUS are $100. In addtion to the ticket cost, we will be hosting a Silent Auction and selling prints of our students' amazing work. Tickets may be purchased in advance by contacting our office at (914) 630-0256 or emailing Michelle Holmes, You may also purchase tickets online through EventBrite. We will also be selling a limited number of tickets at the event. We will be accepting cash or credit cards-- sorry no checks please.

WHY? Why should I support FOCUS?  

Last year. MBP doubled the number of mainstream and special education students participating in our programs. Through camera lens, computer animation and video cameras, our students not only learn the art of creative expression, but they are able to link them directly to course material and real world situations. Your donations and participation help us modernize the school we reach today and prepare for schools we can touch tomorrow.

For further information, to volunteer, or to participate as a sponsor, please feel free to contact Michelle Holmes at (914) 630 0256 or via email at

Jiawan's flower in sun

The documentary video MS 223: The Power of Arts Education has been honored with a 2010 Bronze Telly, an award that recognizes the very best local, regional and cable television, video and film productions, from an international field of more than 13,000 entries.

Commissioned by The Center for Arts Education, the ten-minute documentary, which premiered at the 2009 Grantmakers in the Arts National Conference, was produced and directed by MBP Executive Director Nelle Stokes.  It shows how MS 223 in the Bronx, a rising urban middle school formerly identified as the most dangerous middle school in New York City, is undergoing a transformation through the arts. MS 223 is one of four partnership schools in the School Arts Support Initiative (SASI), created as a partnership between The Center for Arts Education and The New York Times Company Foundation, supported by the U.S. Department of Education and other generous contributors.


Each year Magic Box Productions reaches thousands of children throughout the five boroughs and Westchester, helping students and teachers use media arts to tell their own original stories. With more than 2,500 participants in over 20 schools Magic Box continues to help educational systems, students and teachers bridge the digital divide.

What our students and educators have to say.....

"Using a camera is so exciting that my hand shakes when I touch it. Photographs help me save the moment of happiness. Photography is the magic of light writing!"
-Anonymous Student

"The kids really have a stake in the final product. They learn skills they can use in other classes too.  I began to think of my computer lab as an “editing room.”"

Gifting Program
Magic Box Productions offers a way for you to support our work and find a gift for someone special.  ‘Give the gift of good’ by purchasing beautiful prints of our students’ award-winning photographs!   Help Magic Box by visiting our "Support Us" page.

Inside Magic Box

Magic Box welcomes:

Development Manager, Michelle S. Holmes
Michelle holds a MSeD from Bank Street College of Education in Museum Education. She has worked in Professional Development at the American Museum of Natural History and as a Third/Fourth Grade Teacher at Stevens Cooperative School in Hoboken.  She is inspired by student work and excited about helping Magic Box expand to reach more students throughout New York and beyond.   Prior to development and education, Michelle worked in Project Management for a manufacturing company in Hong Kong.  When she is not working at Magic Box, she is running after her three kids and husband.  

Grant Consultant, Tanya Nadas

Tanya holds an MA in Communications and Mass Culture and specializes in Educational Grant Development. Prior to her work in grant development, Tanya was a researcher, writer and developmental editor on several non-fiction books.

Teaching Artist News

Tali Hinkis recently received a NYSCA grant for individual artists, a NYFA fellowship for interdiscplinary work and a Van Lier fellowship from Harvestworks. Her recent exhibits include State of the Art NY, URBIS, Manchester, UK, and Reinventing Ritual at the Jewish Museum (upcoming).

Brian Buckley has returned from Santa Fe, New Mexico and Germany on a two-show tour of his photogram project “Instant Shadows”, where he spoke at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Siegen, Germany. His Photograms have also been exhibited in: (selected) New York City, Brooklyn, Long Island, Santa Fe, New Mexico, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, Pennsylvania, Birmingham, England, and Bucharest, Romania. Outside of education and creating art, Buckley does creative editorial and advertising photography for: (selected) L’Oreal, New York Magazine, Legno Veneto Floors, the Daily News, Corcoran Real Estate, Zink Magazine, Art Business News, Direct Art, the New York Post…
Some Links:
Meet our Board:

Carmel Corcoran, a native of Ireland, graduated from the law school of the Honorable Society of King’s Inns, Dublin. In 1986, she moved to New York and became a member of the New York Bar.  Carmel is a partner with the law firm of Jones & Jones, O’Connell, and is the mother of two public high school students. Carmel joined the Board of Magic Box in 2008 as she shares our mission of improving and expanding arts in education.

Our thanks to the following for their generous support: 

Center for Arts Education
Cushman & Wakefield
Katzman Ernst Family Foundation
Legal assistance provided by Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP
New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council
New York State Council on the Arts
Pearl Foundation
Sharp Electronics
Funded in part by the Tribeca Film Institute Camera-to-Classroom Fund
Women’s Enterprise Development Center

nysca logo

Approved Sole Source Listing Application Vendor, New York City Department of Education