The Seasons of 4 Downing

  • The completed mural panels installed on location.
  • The 'Broken Angel' building was a significant part of the history of 4 Downing.
  • The design sketch for the panels reflects the historical research done by the team.
  • The Urban Assembly Unison School students worked together to paint each of the eight panels.
  • Clinton Hill community members were invited to join in on the painting of the mural panels.
  • The bright colors and variations of color combinations symbolize the vibrancy of the neighborhood and the passage of time.

Project Description

Groundswell partnered with Barrett Design and Development to create a mural project celebrating the history of one of Brooklyn’s most unique- the "Broken Angel" building at 4 Downing Street in Clinton Hill. The site was originally a farm in the 1800's, then it was turned into a tenement building, an office for trolley cars, and back to an apartment building until it was abandoned for some time and finally sold in 1979 to a man named Arthur Wood for $2,000. Wood and his wife Cynthia turned the building into the "Broken Angel" building by adding ad hoc architectural additions until it eventually towered nine stories above sidewalk level. The building was later condemned for violating building codes.
This passage of time and history is represented in the mural panels by the red path of a trolley car and the stops it makes along the way – a farm, a tenement building, a trolley car, the broken angel symbol, a block party (a nod to Dave Chapelle's "Block Party" filmed on location in 2005), to the bright future of what the building will become in the capable hands of Barrett Design and Development, which has taken over ownership of the building.

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Project Info

Location: 4 Downing Street Brooklyn, NY 11238
Clinton Hill

Community Commission

Urban Environment


The Urban Assembly Unison School
Barrett Design and Development, LLC

Lead Artist(s):
Misha Tyutyunik

Assistant Artist(s):
Ifeatuanya Chiejina



Students at The Urban Assembly Unison School
Acrylic on Wood Panels

Dimensions: Eight panels, 8 x 4ft each

Fun Facts

"We wanted to show the history and the love that permeated from this landmark of a building." -Misha Tyutyunik, Lead Artist
Suggested Activity
Identify a landmark in your neighborhood and do research on its history.
Fun Fact
"Broken Angel" comes from a date Arthur and Cynthia Wood had when they first met. Arthur found a broken angel figurine, and told Cynthia that he would go home, fix it up, and give it to her as a gift. This became a metaphor for the building.