About the Project

On September 15, 2001, Mark Malmgren of Clemson, South Carolina began painting watercolors at a rate of seventy-five per day, a personal creative response to the September 11th terrorist attack on the World Trade Center. The paintings consisted of potted flowers and delicate greenery, sparsely wrought in black pen and dappled with watercolors. Numbered, signed, and dated, the 4,316 unique paintings offered simple and serene expressions of consolation for both a city and a community that had recently suffered a deep loss.


Eager to embrace this profound gesture, Creative Time helped to distribute the paintings throughout lower Manhattan. Deposited in partnership with The Downtown Alliance at sites such as police precincts, fire houses, office buildings, and public schools, among others, the humanity and kinship represented by Malmgren’s paintings and gesture promoted healing and selflessness in a time of tragedy.


Photograph by Charlie Samuels




Mark Malmgren

4316 Watercolors