It’s rare to find a truly secret space left in New York City but we recently had the opportunity to discover one, right in the middle of midtown Manhattan. Our friends at The Vanderbilt Republic, who run the inspiring programming at the Gowanus Loft, like the camera obscura installation in years past, are converting a raw space in midtown that was once an electrical repair company. The cavernous 8,000 square foot space is made possible by a combination of history and zoning – it actually spans three buildings, grandfathered in when skyscrapers were built on top. The once outdoor courtyards were closed in to fulfill a functional purpose in perpetuity, a state of impermanent operability – until now.  The multi-room discovery is to be known as The Bellewether, a flexible performance and production space, and Untapped Cities will be its main media sponsor for its inaugural series of public events this year and we will be offering our Untapped Cities Insiders members advance access to preview the space.

First up will be Circular City Week New York, an initiative of Danish Clean Tech, which will explore the necessity for a new circular economic model. The aim of the week is to “inspire industry professionals across sectors, showcase international pioneers and engage students to be the future of circularity.” The Bellewether has put out an open call for proposals for FLOW, a series of immersive experiences to be hosted inside for the entirety of Circular City Week.

The beams are what support the skyscraper above. Photo by George Del Barrio / The Vanderbilt Republic

The theme of the open call is FLOW and beyond that there are little restrictions. In concept, the proposal must touch on the ideals of circular economics and in execution contain a form of human expression. Innovators and visionaries from various fields are encouraged to apply. Proposals for everything from product launches and art installations to live performances and social explorations or a mix of different types of events will be accepted. Individual artists/entrepreneurs, collective groups, social/NGO enterprises and corporate change-makers working in the visual arts, dance, music/sound, performance art/theater, fashion/culture, poetry/the written word, landscape architecture, product/service design & international relations are encouraged to apply.

There’s even a hidden coffee shop! Photo by George Del Barrio / The Vanderbilt Republic

Those looking to submit a proposal can scope out the site with a tech scout February 6th, 11th, and 13th from 10:00am to 5:00pm by appointment only. Contact creative director and executive producer,  George Del Barrio to schedule a walkthrough. The submission period will close at midnight on February 15th and selected team(s) will be notified on the 22nd. Installation will begin on the 25th of February and open on March 4th.

If you are an Untapped Cities Insider, you can join us for a special preview of the winning exhibit on March 1st while it is being set up in the days ahead of Circular City Week. Not an Insider yet? Become a member today to gain access to free behind-the-scenes tours and special New York City events all year long!

Photo by George Del Barrio / The Vanderbilt Republic

Next, check out the Top 10 Secrets of Grand Central Terminal.