Roberta’s, that beloved Bushwick pizza joint, has been tapped to run the cafe at the BMW Guggenheim Lab, a pop-up urban think tank of sorts that opened earlier this month on a narrow, otherwise forgotten plot of land on East First Street owned by the Department of Parks & Recreation.
Can anyone ever be truly comfortable in New York? I’ve lived here my whole life and still feel the daily stresses of subway rides, traffic, overcrowding and of course insanely high prices (tickets to MoMA cost $25 now?). These Manhattan blues are part of the reason I was both intrigued and skeptical of the BMW Guggenheim Lab, a pop-up event space in the East Village that will present a series of lectures, film screenings and interactive programs all based around the idea of confronting comfort in our cities and urban development. With corporate sponsoring shoved right into its very title, I wondered if the Lab would stick to a privileged, glossy view of urbanization or actually offer legitimate “solutions for city life,” as the program’s website states. Even the word “comfort” suggested to me that these solutions would be targeted only towards a particular social class who has the resources to take advantage of them.
A statement by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation was released today in support of the appoint of PricewaterhouseCoopers as an independent monitor at the Abu Dhabi Guggenheim.
In reaction to exploitative conditions for construction laborers at the site of the upcoming Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, an international group of artists and art world figures are boycotting the Guggenheim, refusing to “participate in museum events or sell work to the museum,” reports the New York Times and today, Human Rights Watch endorsed the artist protest.
Through Finnish television, newspaper and blog media outlets, statements have arisen from Finnish museum and government administration that the construction of a Finland Guggenheim, the subject of a current feasibility study, may be funded by the decommissioning and closing of Helsinki’s own local art museums.
Last night to the accompaniment of much fanfare and celebrity attendance German conceptual “artist’s artist” Hans-Peter Feldmann won the Guggenheim’s Hugo Boss Prize, a biannual award that comes with a cool $100,000. Feldmann wasn’t the obvious choice for the prize; at 69, he is the oldest artist to receive an award usually bestowed upon emerging artists. [New York Times]
The Joyce Theater is going to be a lonely Lower Manhattan performance tenant, with vacancies in the building if there are any performing arts organizations hunting for posh new downtown neighbors.
In a statement made earlier this week, New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, alongside Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Patterson, announced a federal funding allocation of $100 million for a much-touted and much-delayed performing arts center at Ground Zero designed by Frank Gehry’s firm.
Silver said that “this $100 million commitment clearly paves the way for this long-promised performing arts center,” and that it “will be a cultural jewel for Lower Manhattan.”