By Aaron Ginsburg, Tue, August 23, 2022
All images by Nicholas Knight, courtesy of the Public Art Fund, NY
Artist Wendy Red Star’s first-ever public art exhibition was unveiled in New York City this month. Curated by the Public Art Fund, “Wendy Red Star: Travels Pretty” is based on 12 paintings by Red Star inspired by “parfleches,” vibrantly painted rawhide bags created by certain nomadic tribes of the Great Plains. Used to store and transport food and other items, the handpainted containers were typically made by women and designed to compel “means of both self and tribal expression for those who created them,” according to a press release. Reimagined on 100 bus shelters across New York City, Red Star’s paintings celebrate parfleches and bring to light the history and importance of their use.
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By Aaron Ginsburg, Tue, May 17, 2022
Kiyan Williams, “Ruins of Empire,” 2022. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Nicholas Knight, Courtesy of Public Art Fund, NY Kiyan Williams, “Ruins of Empire” was commissioned by Public Art Fund and presented as part of Black Atlantic at Brooklyn Bridge Park, New York City, May 17–November 27, 2022
Spread across three piers at Brooklyn Bridge Park, Black Atlantic is a new outdoor art exhibition inspired by the diaspora across the Atlantic Ocean and which proposes “an open, multifaceted, and heterogeneous idea” of Black identity in the United States today. Co-curated by artist Hugh Hayden and Public Art Fund Adjunct Curator Daniel S. Palmer, Black Atlantic features work from Hayden, and artists Leilah Babirye, Dozie Kanu, Tau Lewis, and Kiyan Williams. The exhibition is on view through November 27.
More this way
By Devin Gannon, Wed, June 2, 2021
Arts programming on 175 Park Avenue’s Graybar Terrace. Image credit: James Corner Field Operations. The artwork shown for illustrative purposes is “The Roses” by Will Ryman
The developers behind the huge tower that will replace the existing Grand Hyatt New York announced last week plans to open up its elevated terraces to the public for events. The Public Art Fund and Lord Cultural Resources will develop a cultural program that will bring art installations, community events, and other programs to 175 Park Avenue, the 83-story mixed-use building proposed by TF Cornerstone and RXR Realty.
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By Devin Gannon, Mon, August 17, 2020
Photos: Nicholas Knight, Courtesy of Public Art Fund NY
A new art installation featuring five giant bells in 14-foot-tall structures will open at Brooklyn Bridge Park this week. Created by San Francisco-based artist Davina Semo, Reverberation allows visitors to ring each bell, drilled with a variety of holes to produce different tones and pitch. The exhibition, curated by the Public Art Fund, will be on view at the waterfront park from August 20 through April 18, 2021.
By Dana Schulz, Thu, July 2, 2020
L to R: Rafael Domenech, Peripheral poem 68 (countermonument pavilion); Andre D. Wagner, Old School, Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn NY 2020; Sharon Madanes, Pulse. All photos courtesy of the artists.
When coronavirus began to bear down on the city, the Public Art Fund conceived a way to bring an artful approach to the crisis. They teamed up with 50 New York-based, emerging artists for a multi-platform exhibition Art on the Grid. As the exhibit developed, though, “the parallel epidemic of systemic racism came into sharp and painful focus,” they tell us, which led to both crises setting the backdrop for this powerful public art series. Now on display on 500 bus shelters and more than 1,700 LinkNYC kiosks across the five boroughs, the exhibit showcases themes such as healing and loss; community and isolation; intimacy and solitude; and inclusivity and excitability.
By Alexandra Alexa, Fri, March 6, 2020
Rendering of Terminal B courtesy of the Governor’s Office
The ongoing $8 billion transformation of LaGuardia Airport has focused on bringing the airport’s functionality into the 21st century, but a series of major art commissions will also enhance how travelers experience the overhauled spaces. On Thursday Governor Cuomo announced a partnership with the nonprofit Public Art Fund that will bring site-specific works by four renowned artists —Jeppe Hein, Sabine Hornig, Laura Owens, and Sarah Sze—to the new Arrivals and Departures Hall opening later this year at Terminal B.
By Devin Gannon, Fri, June 29, 2018
Photo by Nicholas Knight
Marking the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, local artist Tauba Auerbach has transformed a historic fireboat into a modern “dazzle” ship. First invented by British painter Norman Wilkinson during WWI, dazzle camouflage patterns were painted onto ships to distort their forms and confuse enemy submarines. The Public Art Fund and 14-18 NOW, a U.K.-based art program, commisioned the painting of the John J. Harvey fireboat, which first launched in 1931 and helped the FDNY extinguish fires until it retired in the 1990s.
“With Flow Separation, I didn’t want to ignore the John J. Harvey’s identity, so I took the boat’s usual paint job and scrambled it. Dragged a comb through it,” Auerbach said. “The palette also exaggerates the fact that ‘dazzle’ was more about confusing and outsmarting, than about hiding.”
Get the dazzling details
By Michelle Cohen, Fri, June 22, 2018
Ai Weiwei banner 2, outside trump tower; Photo Timothy Schenk, courtesy Public Art Fund, NY
Nearly a year ago, artist Ai Weiwei‘s project, “Good Fences Make Good Neighbors,” commissioned by the Public Art Fund, covered New York City with installations and banners in reference to the current international refugee crisis. Though the works are no longer on display, their message remains even more pressing. In commemoration of World Refugee Day on June 20, the Public Art Fund and eBay for Charity put Ai’s project back into public reach with the sale of limited-edition original portrait banners drawn from those made by the artist (h/t Surface). There are six banners in all, and sales benefit USA for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the International Rescue Committee (IRC), and the Fund’s mission to promote accessible art.
How much are they, and how do I get one?
By Michelle Sinclair Colman, Mon, May 21, 2018
Photo courtesy of the Public Art Fund
This summer, from June 9th to August 26th, from 12pm to 6pm, Austrian artist Erwin Wurm’s Hot Dog Bus will distribute free hot dogs to anyone who agrees to eat it. The Hot Dog Bus, which will be parked at Brooklyn Bridge Park, is presented by the Public Art Fund. The project’s goal is to both get people to eat (is this really a goal we need?) and to think of the human body as a piece of art, specifically as a sculpture. According to the Public Art Fund site, “it is the participation of the viewer that ‘completes’ the work.”
By Devin Gannon, Mon, November 13, 2017
Ai Weiwei: Good Fences Make Good Neighbors, The Arch, courtesy of the Public Art Fund
Ai Weiwei’s New York City art installation, “Good Fences Make Good Neighbors,” is expansive: it features ten large fence-themed structures, more than 90 smaller installations and 200 banners found in all five boroughs. While the multi-site, multi-media exhibition might seem like a lot to explore, the Public Art Fund, which commissioned the project, has made enjoying Weiwei’s sprawling exhibition easy. The fund has created an interactive map that displays all 300 of the famed artist-activist’s artworks currently found at public spaces, transit sites, lampposts and monuments all over the city, as well as additional information for each.
Explore the map