Karisa Antonio works at the intersection of the arts and social justice, designing and implementing programs that broaden public knowledge of, and respect for, the artistry of marginalized people.
At present, she is the Director of Arts and Culture at Lantern Community Services, a social service agency that works with homeless and formerly homeless individuals and families, youth aged out of the foster care system, and people with chronic and persistent mental and/or physical health conditions living in 16 supportive housing buildings and a shelter in New York City. Karisa designed and built Lantern’s Arts and Culture program from the ground up, resulting in the creation of more than 300 original works of visual art, music, poetry, digital photography, and dance each year. She also produces over 200 special events annually with a variety of cultural partners including:
– Museum of Modern Art
– School of Visual Arts
– New York University
– Columbia University
– Bronx ArtSpace
– Bronx Narratives
– New York Horticulture Society
– Community Access Art Collective
– El Barrio’s ArtSpace
– New York Restoration Project
Karisa has been recognized for her work both internally and externally, most recently receiving:
– Lantern Community Services’ 2020 Champion of Collaboration Award
– 2019 Stony Brook University’s 40 Under Forty Award (Civil Service and Activism)
– New York Community Trust Leadership Fellows 2019
– New York Foundation for the Arts Emerging Leaders 2018.
Prior to working at Lantern, Karisa was the Assistant Director of Arts and Education at Lenox Hill Neighborhood House, where she oversaw a portfolio of over 70 arts and education classes per week, produced 40 concerts annually, and managed cultural partnerships, including Carnegie Hall, the Whitney Museum, the Manhattan School of Music, and the Metropolitan Museum of Arts, among many others.
Karisa has worked as a Program Coordinator for the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene/Department of Parks and Recreation special initiative Shape Up NYC, procured and administered Yale University’s AlumniVentures funds at Kipp Charter School in Manhattan, run a summer music festival for three years with the Upper Valley Music Center of New Hampshire, evaluated students for entry into the Lucy Moses Special School for Music, and was the Chair of the Grand Central Neighborhood Social Services Community Advisory Board.
She has presented on program design at:
– Supportive Housing Network of New York Annual Conference (3x)
– Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance
– Janian Medical Care Project for Psychiatric Outreach to the Homeless (PPOH)
– Association of Vocational Rehabilitation in Alcoholism and Substance Abuse
– National Health Care for the Homeless Annual Conference
– Manhattan School of Music