WEST HARLEM, NY.- The 2nd installment of the West Harlem Art Funds intervention series will begin on July 12, 2014 and coincide with City of Water Day organized by Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance.
Beginning at 2 p.m., visitors can experience different works by artists both live and projected. The West Harlem Art Fund has partnered with a host of organizations and artists to bring a meaningful, contemporary art scene to West Harlem and along the Hudson River. Under the Viaduct is a public art initiative spearheaded by the West Harlem Art Fund for the communities of West Harlem, Washington Heights and Inwood. Communities along the Hudson River, want to enhance their open public spaces and attract artist locally, regionally and beyond. Northern Manhattan neighborhoods understand the benefits of the arts and that it can improve quality of life, local tourism, safety as well as bring beautification.
According to Savona Bailey-McClain, Executive Director & Chief Curator for the West Harlem Art Fund, the viaduct is a perfect location for temporary interventions that can interact with the public while mixing art, design, technology & local history. Unique works (which includes sound, dance, graffiti, digital art, holographic art and projection) will engage the viaduct, a historic overpass, new waterfront, sidewalks and even billboards.
The Hispanic Society of America is thrilled to be a part of this exciting public art project in Upper Manhattan, and we thank Savona Bailey-McClain for her leadership and for giving us this opportunity to participate in this creative program, said Margaret E. Connors McQuade, Assistant Director, Curator of Decorative Arts, The Hispanic Society of America.
Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer sent her well wishes, Congratulations to the West Harlem Art Fund for this fantastic and innovative project. These artistic interventions tell the history of our communities in enlightening ways, by using the infrastructural design of the City itself as a canvas.
NY State Senator Adriano Espaillat shared, "The Under the Viaduct - Intervention Series is a creative way to enhance the safety and beauty of West Harlem," said Senator Adriano Espaillat. "The West Harlem Art Fund is a terrific organization that brings culture and economic development to an underserved area. Their projects for City of Water Day and other upcoming installations this summer and fall will showcase the talent our district has to offer and I look forward to these continued collaborations.
"With 'Under the Viaduct,' the West Harlem Art Fund is enhancing splendid public space, just the way the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance is working to improve the waterfront at West Harlem Piers and all around the city," said Roland Lewis, MWA President and CEO. "Together, we are working to reinvigorate under-utilized open space and improve quality of life. On City of Water Day, July 12, after you've admired the art pieces inland, come to the waterfront and enjoy the waves and the breeze!"
Bringing an urban street element to the series is Kathleena Howie also known as Lady K Fever. She will present a live graffiti & performance intervention called Dubbed in Pillar Talk. Using lettering made out of reflective tape, her work which will be near the design installation The H in Harlem by lighting designer/artist Bentley Meeker, attempts to draw visitors with inspirational words as they walk along 12th Avenue.
The Sound Arts Program at Columbia University will invite people to explore the acoustics of the overpass space near Tiemann Place by listening and making noise, and to go searching for ambient sounds to be broadcast into the space via wireless microphones.
NYU students Alon Chitayat and Jeff Ong will be presenting Subway Stories an interactive subway simulator exploring the inner-lives of commuters in New York City. Living in New York City, many of us spend hours a day below ground. Each day millions of people commute via the subway an apparently interactive experience if you stop to consider the potential collisions that could happen. But if youve spent significant time on subways, you begin to realize its often an isolating experience one of the last frontiers where cell phone service and networks are still absent, leaving its inhabitants to their own conversations, music, and inner-thoughts. Like a horizontal elevator, passengers anxiously wait for their stop, acutely aware of their temporary neighbors.
They ask, what judgments do we make about those around us in places such as a subway car? The passing encounters, the conversations, the thoughts of our temporary neighbors? Through an interactive storytelling environment, Subway Stories invites users to reconsider the seemingly ordinary and daily experience of commuting. Using two handles, a user controls the position of the adjacent car from which the camera looks into the subway on screen. Passengers have accompanying thoughts and sounds that play when the camera is focused on them. Our hope is to create an intimate experience between the user and the subway, but more importantly between passengers bridging the gap between the isolating experiences of public spaces with the power of stories.
Six pop-up dance works that focus on flow and water will occur spontaneously in the early evening by Michael Abbatiello, Dante Brown, Theresa Elwell, Flannery Gregg, Chafin Seymour, Autumn Scoggan, Kiki Williams