IDEAS CITY, taking place this year from May 1-4, is a celebration of the international arts and culture scene, a party that has been run by the New Museum since 2011 and attracts participants from around the globe. A two-day conference, workshops, arts exhibitions, discussions, and performances will highlight the weekend’s festivities.
“IDEAS CITY explores the future of cities around the globe with the belief that arts and culture are essential to the vitality of urban centers, making them better places to live, work, and play. Founded by the New Museum in 2011, IDEAS CITY is a major collaborative initiative between hundreds of arts, education, and civic organizations. This year’s theme is Untapped Capital, with participants focused on resources that are under-recognized or underutilized in our cities.
IDEAS CITY is a four-day Festival of conferences, workshops, an innovative StreetFest around the Bowery, and more than one hundred independent projects and public events that are forums for exchanging ideas, proposing solutions, and accelerating creativity.”
There’s so much excitement taking place this weekend, it can be hard to choose just a small handful of things to do. We’ve compiled a short list of the IDEAS CITY highlights:
- Streetfest, May 4, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. The IDEAS CITY Streetfest takes place all day around the Bowery and in the Sara Roosevelt Park. A great place for families to play and learn, the Streetfest features a feast for all the senses. Create seed bombs with Anne Apparu, take a tour of the Bowery Mission, taste some carbonated fruit juices from Brooklyn Soda Works, take a fitness class with Shape Up NYC, or learn how to care for a newly planted tree with MillionTreesNYC. There are over 100 activities that are set to take place for Streetfest, so get out and enjoy the sunshine – there’s truly something for everyone this Saturday!
- MARK-IT, May 4 launch. Created by New York artist Esmeralda Kosmatopoulos, MARK-IT is a web-based project that will join users throughout the city for the entire month of May:
“MARK-IT is an app-based collective experience inviting New Yorkers to collaborate in the making of a digital artwork. Using their movements in the 5 boroughs, participants create a virtual drawing at the scale of the city. After participants download the app on their phones and choose a color, their daily voyages in New York’s urban landscape are plotted on a virtual city map. The map is not visible; the various lines are drawn across a white canvas, forming an evolving, organic matrix of overlapping lines. The living and breathing artwork in the making is visible to the public in real-time online and at the end of the project, each participant receives a numbered edition of the final drawing as co-creator of the artwork. The free app is available for download on the Apple and Android app stores.”
- Words on Walls, May 4, 8:30 p.m. – midnight. If you’re both a visual and a literary person, you’ll love this collaborative project that takes place on Mulberry Street after Streetfest:
“Young poets from Urban Word NYC present Words on Walls, a collaborative performance of music and spoken word along with poetry projections by the POEMobile. Sponsored by City Lore and Bowery Arts + Science.”
- After Hours 2: Murals on the Bowery, April 25 – October 21. This ongoing project, sponsored by Sotheby’s auction house, focuses on the works of artists in the area, with the collaboration on local shop owners. Take a walk down the Bowery on any night after the shops close to see a one-of-a-kind art exhibition:
“The second series of “After Hours” invites the public to stroll along the Bowery, guided by a map and audio tour, and view roller shutter works by emerging and established artists.”
- Change of State, May 4, 8 p.m. – midnight. Illuminated on the facade of the New Museum, Change of State continues a tradition of projected artwork first run for the inaugural IDEAS CITY event in 2011. This year’s project was curated by Nuit Blanche New York (NBNY):
“A site-specifi c projection on the New Museum, “Change of State (2013)” is a moment of transformation—physical or social, perceived and actual—and a visual challenge to the symbolic power of the built environment. Change of State features new work by artists and architects whose interventions draw upon a range of mediums—from painting (Agathe de Bailliencourt), to animation (Cecil Balmond), text (Nicolas Guagnini), and video (Krzysztof Wodiczko). Commissioned by the New Museum; system design and technical sponsorship from the Media Merchants.”
- Conference, May 1-2. This conference will feature speakers from around the globe and encourage audience involvement in various talks and discussions on international art and culture. Speakers include urban designer Thaddeus Pawlowski, cinematographer Mai Iskander, artist Barry McGee, professor and renowned designer Charles Renfro, and activist Max Liboiron:
“The Conference is dedicated to the exploration of Untapped Capital. It will focus on four areas where Untapped Capital can be found and put to productive use: Ad Hoc Strategies, Waste, Play, and Youth. Each topic will be discussed, questioned, and analyzed by a moderated panel of experts and innovators.”