*Editor's note: This article has been updated to reflect location changes and exhibition dates.
NYCxDESIGN has unveiled details of Design Pavilion 2023, which will see three public installations constructed across the city. Described as “New York’s premier public design exhibition,” the installations will be on display from October 12-18 during Archtober, the city’s month-long celebration of architecture.
Two of the built installations, Bamboo Cloud and Public Display (at Meatpacking District’s Gansevoort Plaza), will act as “urban oases” for passersby as well as “temporary forums designed to inspire community gathering, productive conversation, and personal reflection.” The third reflection, I Was Here, comprises a digital art projection on the One World Trade Center Podium, “a bold statement reflecting on our country’s legacy of enslavement and the wish to heal wounded sites.”
Bamboo Cloud has been designed by Shanghai-based IlLab, and seeks to challenge the traditional applications of bamboo. Composed of bamboo strips woven into a porous surface, the pavilion naturally uses its internal force for form finding and eventually stabilizes as a structurally resilient hollow space. The experience is complete by a lighting scheme designed by L’Observatoire International.
“The Bamboo Cloud defines a temporary new space offering visitors a seat under its playful game of light and shadow, to contemplate the beautiful views of the river, said Hanxiao Liu, co-founding partner at llLab.
Public Display has been designed by Studio Kër and its founder Michael Bennett, former Super Bowl Champion and NFL defensive end. Constructed of cross-laminated timber, the exhibition seeks to “elevate the concept of ‘mass’ to an art form that enhances the weight of mass, the lightness of space, and the poetry of connection.”
“Public Display is a tribute to our environment, with a commitment to sustainability and an artistic presentation,” said Bennett. “Plus, the space offers a series of community conversations. To listen is to love, so we create sacred space to listen."
I Was Here is a series of public art installations that began in 2016, and will make its NYC debut at the World Trade Center. Hosted by Spireworks, animated Ancestor Spirit Portraits will be projected on all four sides of The World Trade Center Podium 200 feet above the ground. Conceptualized by Marjorie Guyon with video and animation co-created by Marc Aptakin, Roy Husdell, and Yoel Meneses of Yes We Are Mad, the presentation will “commemorate those whose names we will never know and begin the process of healing wounded sites from the legacy of enslavement.”
“When I was three, I took the ferry and climbed to the very top of Lady Liberty to see the land and sea through her eyes,” said Marjorie Guyon, artist and founder of I Was Here. “Like the Statue of Liberty, the Ancestor Spirit Portraits of the I Was Here project are iconic - their presence allowing our city, our country, and our world to see through their sacred, ancient eyes.”
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