08/12/14 1:00pm

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Nobody wants to think about it, but Labor Day is around the corner, and that means one thing: It’s time to head to the peninsula to check out the large-scale, multi-site, mostly outdoor art installation Rockaway! before it ends. This free, summer-long display celebrates the reopening of Fort Tilden, a former U.S. Army base in the Gateway National Recreation Area that sustained severe damage during Hurricane Sandy. Visitors can peruse photographs taken by punk rocker Patti Smith, a gallery dedicated to Walt Whitman that includes books of his poetry, and nest sculptures by Adrián Villar Rojas (above). Installed in several locations, these nests invite local birds to inhabit them. Other components include The Forty Piece Motet by Janet Cardiff (first photo below), a spatialized adaptation of a sacred 16th-century motet that’s in the former military chapel, and a mutli-genre collaboration with the Honolulu Biennial at the newly restored Rockaway Beach Surf Club on Beach 87th Street. Rockaway! – a collaboration between the Rockaway Artists Alliance, the Museum of Modern Art, MoMA PS1, the National Park Service, the Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy, and Smith — also showcases Fort Tilden’s natural and historical beauty.

For more information on venues and times and four more photos, go to the jump page.

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Unbeknownst to us, the M. Wells team opened up a small bar on the rooftop of MoMA PS1 for the summer. Tastoria checked out the space this weekend, which is also where M. Wells grows vegetables and herbs for its Dinette outpost downstairs. (Check out more photos of the garden right here.) There are now some tables and chairs to enjoy the incredible view, and a bar cart serving up beer and wine. Roof visitors can also check out a small-scale Richard Serra piece on display in an alcove on the roof.

The garden is open during normal museum hours, weather permitting, but is closed during Warm Up Saturdays.

MoMA PS1 Rooftop Features Drinks from M. Wells and a Hell of a View [Tastoria]

Photo via Facebook

05/12/14 4:00pm

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Western Queens art patrons got a new reason to jump for joy — and relax in a seat — last Saturday, when the LIC Arts Bus made its maiden voyage. Scheduled to run every weekend until September 14th, the free service will stop at Socrates Sculpture Park, The Noguchi Museum, SculptureCenter and MoMA PS1. The 25-passenger vehicle, operated on a first-come-first-seated basis, departs from Socrates on a continuous loop from noon to 6 pm on Saturdays and Sundays. (Click here for a schedule with up-to-the-minute updates.) 

Seen in top photo before the launch are (from left) Noguchi Director Jenny Dixon, Socrates Director of Development and Communications Katie Denny, City Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer, Socrates Executive Director John Hatfield, MoMA PS1 COO Peter Katz and Noguchi Director of Administration and External Affairs Amy Hau.

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Top photo: It’s in Queens; bottom photo: Noguchi Sculpture Center

02/14/14 2:00pm

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If you still need plans for Valentines Day, MoMA PS1 announced it is hosting an M. Wells dinner alongside a double feature — we couldn’t imagine a better date. They’ll screen Some Like it Hot at 6pm and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind at 8pm inside the VW Dome. Inside the museum, M. Wells Dinette will serve dinner and drinks. Tickets to the double feature (food isn’t included) cost $10 and you can purchase them here.

Valentine’s Dome Double Feature [MoMA PS1 Facebook]

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MoMA PS1 just selected the architect to transform the museum’s outdoor courtyard this summer. And the winner of the 15th annual Young Architects Program in New York: David Benjamin with the firm The Living. The pavilion, dubbed “Hy-Fi,” is made up of a circular tower of organic bricks made from corn stalks and living root structures. According to the Times, the material is “growing from and returning to the earth with almost no waste, energy needs or carbon emissions.” Here’s the architect going into detail about the design:

The organic bricks are produced through an innovative combination of corn stalks (that otherwise have no value) and specially-developed living root structures, a process that was invented by Ecovative, an innovative company that The Living is collaborating with. The reflective bricks are produced through the custom-forming of a new daylighting mirror film invented by 3M. The reflective bricks are used as growing trays for the organic bricks, and then they are incorporated into the final construction before being shipped back to 3M for use in further research. The organic bricks are arranged at the bottom of the structure and the reflective bricks are arranged at the top to bounce light down on the towers and the ground. The structure inverts the logic of load-bearing brick construction and creates a gravity-defying effect—instead of being thick and dense at the bottom, it is thin and porous at the bottom. The structure is calibrated to create a cool micro-climate in the summer by drawing in cool air at the bottom and pushing out hot air at the top.

The piece will also provide shade, seating, and a water feature. It’ll open in conjunction with the PS1 Warm Up Series in late June. Check out more renderings after the jump!

Architect Named to Transform Courtyard at MoMA PS1 [NY Times]

Renderings via The Living (more…)

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Today through this Sunday, MoMA PS1 is holding its first annual stoop sale. Up for sale are books, magazines, DVDs, vinyl records, CDs and T-shirts up to 75 percent off. PS1 is arranging its goods on the courtyard steps — on the bottom are the $1 bargains, near the top you’ll find higher-priced, but still discounted, items. Both credit and cash is accepted. If it rains, the sale will move into the Magazine Store, off the main entrance of the museum.

Photo via MoMA PS1

07/03/13 1:00pm

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As it has for the past five years, Queens will be left in the dark during NYC’s 2013 Fourth of July celebration. The Macy’s fireworks will again shoot over the Hudson River, making the best viewing spots in Manhattan and even New Jersey. So the best chance to see an illuminated Queens sky is at Citi Field tonight (July 3rd) after the Mets game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, which starts at 7:10 pm. However, the borough offers so many other fun activities over Independence Weekend that nobody will miss the pyrotechnics. On July 4th, the Louis Armstrong House Museum launches its summer concert series with Bria Skonberg, a fast-rising trumpet star, and her jazz band at 2 pm. An hour later, the Z Hotel’s rooftop party gets started with a live deejay on this 300-capacity roof, which offers breath-taking views of Midtown Manhattan, the East River, the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge and Queens. On July 6th, Ridgewood Social will organize a huge, family-friendly potluck picnic at Grover Cleveland Park from noon to 3:30 pm. Participants bring food, drinks, creative supplies and silverware, and they enjoy painting, drawing, knitting, crochet and the opportunity for youngsters to slay a dragon. Also on July 6th, MoMA PS1 will hold its second nine-hour Warm Up Series jam with the doors opening at noon. On July 7th, The Inner Roots Band will bring its unique style of reggae to the Queens Central Library at 3 pm. Formerly known as “Ryddim Kings,” this group takes audiences on a journey through Jamaican music with ska, dance hall and vintage classics by Bob Marley.

06/28/13 1:00pm

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It’s U-shaped, surrounded by tall concrete walls and within earshot of the 7 train — and it’s the place to be. On June 29th, this former schoolyard will host the first MoMA PS 1 Warm Up 2013 party of the summer. Every Saturday until September 7th, roughly 5,000 hipsters, party animals and international tourists will flock to the MoMA PS1 courtyard for cutting edge music (dance hall, juke, dubstep), modern art and out-of-the-box fun. The above-ground kiddie swimming pool, imported sand and chaise lounges are nice too. Now in its 16th year, Warm Up combines elements of outdoor rave with gallery show and street fair, but to regulars, it’s just another Saturday with friends. Details: Warm Up 2013, MoMA PS1, 22-25 Jackson Ave., LIC, Saturdays from June 29 to Sept. 7, 3 pm – 9 pm but doors open at noon, $15 in advance/$18 day-of. Click here to buy tickets.

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05/24/13 11:00am

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If you’ve visited PS1 in Long Island City recently, you might have noticed work going on at the corner of 21st Street and 46th Avenue and wondered what was happening. Turns out it’s a five-story, eight-unit residential project that’s actually been in the works for six years, although DOB only issued a permit for the new building this spring. In all, there will be about 5,500 square feet of residential space and another 1,150 square feet of commercial space. GMAP

05/23/13 10:30am

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The condo-zation of Long Island City has been touted mostly as a success. The transformation of the industrial neighborhood into an oasis of gleaming towers and manicured amenities has planted a new community in a formerly desolate place. Waterfront development, a Bloomberg priority, has chugged along.

But 5Pointz is different. Its graffiti-covered walls have given authority to the neighborhood’s status as an artistic center. Tourists and locals flock to the distinct destination. It has enjoyed a certain real estate idealism, with landlord David Wolkoff giving local artists his blessing in the form of free rent.

That charmed existence ended on Wednesday, when Wolkoff fielded public comments in advance of his planned demolition of 5Pointz, which he plans to replace with two towers of roughly 1,000 units. Artists reacted with sadness and anger, as the Observer reported, and perhaps Wolkoff experienced some regret in entangling himself with a tenant base that turned against him so publicly.

But the reality is that New York rents and New York prices have climbed stratospherically, and Long Island City is prime for redevelopment. And redevelopment is not so much immoral as amoral, dealing more with financing, opportunity and return on investment than societal good.

“We allowed the art to be programmed in this particular site not because it was a right of the artists, but because we, as the owners, really enjoyed the work that was being done,” Wolkoff said at the hearing. “But things do progress…and we are looking toward the future.”

The developer said that he still plans to support art in 5Pointz’s future incarnation through loft spaces inside the new development. The 5Pointz of today, however, appears to be doomed, barring something dramatic. In that vein, Wolkoff might be served to look at his neighbor, MoMA, which owns PS1. In the face of criticism, the museum said that it would look at saving the American Folk Art Museum, which it had planned to demolish, after a public outcry.

Photo from Snackish