Spend more than five minutes in Chelsea and you’ll find a smattering of galleries, installations, and one of New York’s most prominent art scenes, from the famous David Zwirner Gallery, now social media famous because of recent exhibitions by Yayoi Kusama to the blank, spacious Gagosian Gallery, now hosting legendary recluse and architectural sculptor Michael Heizer.
What may go unnoticed, however, is the history behind the neighborhood, as is the case for most areas on the lower half of Manhattan. Last Saturday, we took a tour with David Behringer, founder of The Two Percent, whose Chelsea art gallery tour, called Audio Hop, showcases both sides of Chelsea culture and focuses almost as much on the walk to each of Chelsea’s galleries as it does on the galleries themselves. Audio Hop will continue into June, take a break for the summer, and return in the fall with all new tours. Here were some of the weirdest things we found.
They say creativity sours with age, that faced with the tumult of adult life, there’s room for little else besides work and the occasional dinner party or wedding to let loose. Gone are the days of make-believe and action figures and tag in the backyard.
Turns out, those simpler pleasures aren’t so easily let go. At least, that’s the idea behind “The collectivity project,” an art installation and social experiment inhabiting New York’s High Line around West 30th Street. It opened in May as part of “Panorama,” an outdoor art collection sponsored by High Line Art. The premise of designer and artist Olafur Eliasson is simple: gather up around two tons of all white legos, hire ten architectural firms to build the most outlandish things they can fathom, and invite anyone who passes to pick it all apart and build something of their own. The exhibition, free and open during the day, has slowly transitioned from ten pristine white creations to a whole mess of angles, bridges, and names written in bricks.
There’s always a lot going on at The High Line. Panorama, a new group exhibit about vistas and vantage points, natural and manmade, is now on display, in addition to an installation meant to crumble over time on the last section of the High Line. This particular stretch, which remained abandoned for many years, takes you right to the Hudson River and back to 10th Avenue, with every inch of this final phase keeping the integrity of the existing park.
The eleven artists participating in “Panorama” have succeeded in using their environment in a way that both compliments their work and meld their sculptures into the environment. Here is a recap of the work you’ll see along the way:
Last night, the latest Blueprint video from NYCmedia about the transformation of The High Line premiered. Before the full episode is available for streaming, here’s a reminder of where we’ve come since the High Line was constructed in 1934.
The High Line attracts nearly 6,000,000 visitors a year. Though thoroughly modern at every step, The High Line Park owes its success –and its very existence–to the past. In fact, the elevated train tracks that make up the current day park were originally constructed not only to deliver food to Manhattan, but also to save lives.
Faith Ringgold describes herself as a painter, writer, speaker, mixed media sculptor and performance artist. But she is probably best known for her story quilts and illustrated children’s books. Raised in Harlem, her artistic focus and inspiration was on the fabric of her community, racial conflicts, the female view of the civil rights movement, inequality for women, and in particular, focusing on African-American women in their efforts to have their work recognized and admitted into galleries and museums. (more…)