Although cultural institutions in New York City remain closed to the public because of the coronavirus, some are opening their lobbies to provide Black Lives Matter protestors a safe space, a restroom, snacks and water, WiFi, face masks, or just a place to recharge. The social media account “Open Your Lobby” launched last week on Twitter and Instagram to track the museums and theaters that are repurposing their space in support of protesters. According to the organizers, there are more than 70 organizations participating nationwide, with more than two dozen in New York City alone.
Rendering of proposed exhibition space by Culturespaces/ Woods Bagot, courtesy of LPC
An art center with immersive art exhibitions has been proposed for a landmarked former banking hall in Lower Manhattan. Culturespaces, a French museum operator, presented its plan to adapt the Emigrant Industrial Savings Bank into a center of digital art to the city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission on Tuesday. The design proposal from Woods Bagot Architects includes alterations to the landmarked interior to accommodate a ticketing area and necessary audiovisual equipment for the art center, as well as modifications to the exterior of the building.
Business sign 3.20.20, photo by Stephen Harmon, courtesy of New-York Historical
The New-York Historical Society is asking New Yorkers to donate any materials related to the coronavirus pandemic as a way to preserve this moment in the city’s history. First created during September 11, the museum’s History Responds initiative has collected objects related to movements like Black Lives Matter, Occupy Wall Street, marriage equality, and others.
Anna Netrebko in the title role of Donizetti’s “Lucia di Lammermoor.” Photo: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera
Although the coronavirus has shuttered most of the city, many museums, performance venues, theaters, and famous New Yorkers are offering free (or low-cost) online resources to entertain New Yorkers throughout this difficult period. From virtual storytime with Brooklyn Public Library librarians to live-streamed performances by the Metropolitan Opera to baking classes with Milk Bar’s Christina Tosi to dance lessons from the Radio City Rockettes, support local organizations safely from your home. This list was lasted updated at 10:00 a.m. on April 3, 2020.
With city and state government closing schools until at least the end of April and shutting down restaurants and bars aside from takeout and delivery, NYC is in unprecedented times. 6sqft has begun compiling a list of closures, cancellations, and postponements, as well as information on how the subway, ride-share companies, and public entities like libraries are handling the outbreak and how refunds or credits are being issued. As the situation develops, we’ll be updating this list to the best of our knowledge. This list was last updated at 2:30 pm on Thursday, March 26.
Two Brooklyn institutions are joining forces to broaden their impact and create “the premiere collection” of archival materials related to the history of the borough. The Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) and Brooklyn Historical Society (BHS) have announced a plan to unify their resources, which was approved by the boards of both organizations this week. The library will serve as the parent institution and the partnership is expected to bring greater financial stability to both while expanding the historical society’s reach through the library’s 59 branches.
A conceptual rendering of the Allison and Roberto Mignone Halls of Gems and Minerals, opening in fall 2020 at the American Museum of Natural History. Rendering courtesy American Museum of Natural History.
The American Museum of Natural History announced this week that the new Allison and Roberto Mignone Halls of Gems and Minerals will be opening in fall of 2020. Named for longtime museum supporters Roberto and Allison Mignone, the long-awaited redesign will be a dazzling showcase for one of the greatest collections of its kind. The new Halls will be connected to Studio Gang’s 235,000-square-foot Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education and Innovation.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art has announced two new sculpture commissions to be installed in the museum’s facade niches and the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden later this year. Mexican artist Héctor Zamora will create a site-specific intervention on the roof titled Lattice Detour that’s set to open on April 21. On September 9, American artist Carol Bove will unveil new sculptures in the building’s Fifth Avenue facade niches, becoming only the second artist to activate the building’s exterior in this way. The works are still in progress but Sheena Wagstaff, the Met’s Leonard A. Lauder Chairman of Modern and Contemporary Art, hinted that Zamora’s piece will “invite us to reconsider the panoramic view of the city skyline” and Bove’s installation will feature “colorful stylized abstractions.”
Photo by Glenn Castellano, New-York Historical Society
This Presidents’ Day, visit Washington, D.C. without leaving New York City. The New-York Historical Society on Friday opened a special permanent gallery that features a detailed replica of the White House Oval Office. The “Meet the Presidents” exhibit allows visitors to play POTUS for a day, with the classic Resolute Desk set up for photo ops.
Lexington Avenue, between 105th and 106th Streets, Manhattan, 1913. Photograph by Pierre P. Pullis, Lundin Collection, Courtesy of the New York Transit Museum
A new photo exhibit at the New York Transit Museum provides a unique look at the construction of the city’s subway system, as well as its enduring impact. Opening Thursday, Streetscapes & Subways: Photographs by Pierre P. and Granville W. Pullis shows what it was like before and after the subway system was constructed, as well as the architectural and cultural changes occurring simultaneously above ground.