Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Arielle Falk's "DE-INHIBITIONATORS" will inhabit at Union Square this Thursday

This Thursday, you should check out "DE-INHIBITIONATORS" presented by one of Art in Odd Places' recent artist, Arielle Falk:

Thursday, April 21, 2011*
10 am – 12 pm
Union Square Park (South End)
14th St. btw/ University & Park Pl., NYC
*rain date: Thursday, April 28

We recently caught up with Arielle to know more about her current project.


Aiop: How's everything since we featured you in our blog last year?
AF: Good, thanks for asking. I’ve mostly been busy working on this project, which I am thrilled to finally present.

Aiop: Why call the your recent project "DE-INHIBITIONATORS"?
AF: The sculptural structures in which the performers will be moving are called DE-INHIBITIONATORS. I titled them that because not only do they rid their inhabitants of any kind of self-conscious inhibition caused by awareness of being observed by The Other, but also, and more importantly, the idea is that our cultural practice of constructing our identities through consumption, in all its various guises, literally inhibits us both personally and societally. The structures temporarily remove all elements of one’s identity, thus freeing them from this particular mind-state that has permeated our brains, becoming almost second nature to most of us. What happens when we remove our clothes, shoes, bag, hair-styles, tattoos, ipods and other possessions - all the things that make up our personal brand? What I imagine is a sort of release, and that is what this project is about.

Aiop: How did you get started with the project?
AF: DE-INHIBITIONATORS grew out of a few previous projects, in particular, a series of sculptures entitled SUNGLASSES FOR THE FACE, which also explored some of the same themes (identity, commodification of the self, privacy, etc…) and a performance entitled THE CROSSING which was a lot about random, non-choreographed movement and the concept of personal space. I was fortunate to receive a grant from Franklin Furnace (, which made this project possible.

Aiop: Is there a specific reason why you chose to do the project during a weekday morning?
AF: I chose a weekday morning because I want to avoid major crowds (Farmer’s Market doesn’t set up on Thursdays) so that the performers within the structures could move about with more ease and have more of the run of the park. I also wanted to catch the commuters, who by also moving through Union Square, will become part of this random dance in a way. The whole thing is more about being seen by members of the general public as they make their way to their next destination as opposed to people actually consciously choosing to attend and watch my event, on for instance, a Saturday afternoon.

Aiop: What should people in Union Square today expect from your project?
AF: To see something different, unexpected and hopefully more attractive and thought-provoking than the usual scenery: DSW, Best Buy, Diesel, Forever 21, and now, a la Times Square, even a TGI Fridays!

Thank you Arielle and we are  very excited about your current project.

Information about "DE-INHIBITIONATORS"  can be found below. We hope to see you there!

DE-INHIBITIONATORS is a large-scale public performance art piece by artist and 2010-2011 Franklin Furnace Fundwinner Arielle Falk. Performers will inhabit 6 differently colored and sized upright, rectangular, wheeled, wooden structures/sculptures, or DE-INHIBITIONATORS, and walk them around during the day in Union Square Park. The structures will cover the occupants from head to toe yet still allow them to see (through special privacy screens) and move about, experiencing the surrounding public space privately and anonymously, free from binding elements such as the ego, the physical self, and the gaze of the other, while creating a random dance of these unexpected sculptures in the park/cityscape.

The goal of this project is to provoke reflection on the consumer driven nature of our culture. DE-INHIBITIONATORS is a response to the prevailing ideology that instructs us that to live is to acquire and that modern identity - the Curated Self - is almost entirely assembled through the act of consumption.  By reducing the identity of the inhabitant to that of an anonymous, genderless entity, devoid of any indicator of class or status, these structures playfully allude to a state of mind in which all are equal and force us to consider the ways in which our excessive consumer habits numb and inhibit us on both an individual and societal level. It is Falk’s hope that DE-INHIBITIONATORS will inspire viewers to look past their own carefully assembled identities, past the commodification of the self (via shopping, Facebook etc.) and to refocus on thinking about more authentic kinds of community for the 21st century.

Interactive on many levels, DE-INHIBITIONATORS requires participation from not only the volunteers occupying the structures, but also the passersby, the general public, who by moving through the park alongside the gliding sculptures will become both audience and part of the performance. The physical landscape of Union Square, a park as well as a major shopping destination, is also a vital interactive component both conceptually and visually. By freeing their inhabitants from their constructed identities, as well as by simply existing as a free public art piece, the DE-INHIBITIONATORS will actively challenge the surrounding consumerist environment, while at the same time, their colors and shapes will constantly interact with those of the natural and man made landscape.
Arielle Falk, born 1983 in Washington DC, is a Brooklyn-based artist working in video, performance, and sculpture. She received her BA from Eugene Lang College (NYC) in 2007 and has since exhibited both nationally and internationally at venues such as P.P.O.W Gallery, Envoy Enterprises, Cuchifritos, Movement Research at Judson Church, Art in Odd Places Pedestrian Festival, BolteLang (Zurich), Antimatter Underground Film Festival (Canada), EXiS Experimental Film & Video Festival (Korea) and Festival Miden (Greece). Her first solo exhibition, Lego My Ego, held last year at LZ Project Space in NYC's Lower East Side, was named "Best in Show" by The Village Voice.

Franklin Furnace's mission is to present, preserve, interpret, proselytize and advocate on behalf of avant-garde art, especially forms that may be vulnerable due to institutional neglect, their ephemeral nature, or politically unpopular content. Franklin Furnace is dedicated to serving artists by providing both physical and virtual venues for the presentation of time-based visual art, including but not limited to artists' books and periodicals, installation art, performance art, "variable media art"; and to undertake other activities related to these purposes. Franklin Furnace is committed to serving emerging artists; to assuming an aggressive pedagogical stance with regard to the value of avant-garde art to life; and to fostering artists' zeal to broadcast ideas.

This performance was made possible, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Major support of the Franklin Furnace Fund was provided in 2010-11 by the Lambent Foundation Fund of Tides Foundation and Jerome Foundation.

A lace out of place: meet Crystal Gregory

Our Art in Odd Places call for artists' proposals for 2011 is in full swing. The whole team is very excited to receive your submissions. To keep the energy flowing, we feature previous Art in Odd Places artists to share stories about the festival. We have featured quite a number of artists in the past, so feel free to browse our blog for inspiration.

To start off this year's featured artist, let's meet Crystal Gregory, Art in Odd Places 2009 artist. The "guerilla crochet technique" she used during the festival questioned gender role assumption by putting something we consider "feminine" (her crochet) against a strong environment- urban landscapes. She has created work in public spaces since then and will be attending the Art Institute of Chicago this fall on a full merit scholarship.

Aiop: Tell us about Crystal Gregory
CG: I use lace as the foundation of my work, giving structure to my ideas and rhythm to my patterns. Lace draws the eye to negative space, delicately unveiling, revealing more than it conceals, using it’s own emptiness as pattern. Lace and cloth have strong relationships to domesticity, privacy and personal space and at the same time this material is incredibly charged with societal associations of class, femininity, and sex. As a multi-media artist I am using the material ideas of lace to inspect issues of the urban landscape, the home, and handwork. My materials are domestic and architectural and operate as both sculpture and site specific installation.

Invasive Crochet - by Amber Gregory
handmade cotton doilies and razor wire fence, 30’ x 1’ x 1’, 2009

Invasive Crochet - by Amber Gregory
handmade cotton doilies and razor wire fence, 30’ x 1’ x 1’, 2009

Aiop: How was your Art in Odd Places experience?
CG:  My AiOP experience was great! The curation was considerate and professional. I got wonderful responses to my work from passers by, KiptonART (Rose, Desiree. "Art Review: Art in Odd Places, 2009." KiptonART. October 8, 2009 and an online interview with Joshua Suzanne

Aiop: Walk us through your thought process in creating your piece for Art in Odd Places 2009.
CG: I had been building crochet graffiti around Brooklyn and Manhattan leading up to the show. I wanted to push the idea and further the tension in the concept. My solution was to create 80+ hand made crochet doilies to smother the razor wire hanging above an empty lot. I was stitching all over the city to make that many doilies, on the train, in the park, and even at work as a bartender.

Aiop: What projects are you currently working on and where can people reach you?
CG: I am currently showing at a nontraditional gallery on the upper east side called Fair Folks & a Goat ( A public work on view until the fall is at the Prospect Park B/Q stop in Lefferts Gardens sponsored by a grant from the NYC DOT. I am also getting ready to start an MFA program in the Fiber and Material Studies Department at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. My
website is

Aiop: Where was piece located on 14th street?
CG: My piece was up for the month in the razor wire of an abandoned lot on 14th St between 2nd and 3rd Ave.

Visit her website ( to see more of her work. We wish you all the best at the Art Institute of Chicago.

It is not too late to create your Art in Odd Places proposal to meet the May 8 deadline. You can download the application here 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

You are invited: POP UP ART - April 7, 2010

Cheryl Rivas informed us about an upcoming  art show Friday. We are loving the fact she is using a performance space,  such as Theater Lab, to display works of art. Another Art in Odd Place moment for us. You don't want to miss this. See details below

Sunglasses at Nite presents "Pop up Art "
Friday, April 8th
7-11 pm
Theater Lab - 137 W14th -Studio C

Friday, April 1, 2011

A "Platform" and Table for Urban Festival 2011

 It was cold and rainy along 14th street today for  Urban Festival 2011. Everyone, however,  powered through and made it happen. Our social media director, Cesar Jesena, had a great time collaborating with Brolab for their performance. Here is a glimpse of their work:

The Platform

Cesar Jesena, Art in Odd Places social media director,  getting ready  for his moment

 Adam, Ryan and Jonathan of Brolab braving  the rain and taking their place

Rahul, Adam and Ryan post the interview

 During this performance, there were two cameras on ground and one located at the 2nd floor of the Pratt building The transcript and video of the performance will be available soon. Stay tuned.

If you have any pictures from Urban Festival, feel free to share it  by emailing Art in Odd Places would love to feature it.