Big Public Art Plans for Downtown Brooklyn’s Many Empty Spaces

10/12/2010 3:27 PM |

Hoyt-Schermerhorn subway entrance mural

The Court-Livingston-Schermerhorn Business Improvement District (CLS BID)—which covers an L-shaped 20-block stretch of Downtown Brooklyn from Cadman Plaza to the intersection of Schermerhorn and Flatbush—is weighing proposals from 100 artists, 70 of whom are based in Brooklyn, for about 20 outdoor installations in the area. According to The Wall Street Journal‘s Metropolis blog, the sites, outlined in a CLS BID black walls survey (PDF) will be filled by summer of next year. Priority locations include the building facade at the Hoyt-Schermerhorn subway station entrance (pictured) and a parking garage on Bond Street, but as you know if you spend any time at all around there, there’s no shortage of surface in need of beautifying.

Though none of the proposals have been released, they’re being evaluated by a curatorial committee that includes staff from the Brooklyn Academy of Music, the Brooklyn Museum and the city’s Department of Cultural Affairs. Most promising, scanning the survey of fill-able blank spaces for large-scale public art, are the innumerable decrepit walls surrounding dormant construction sites, fences around parking lots, and monolithic facades of municipal, administrative and office buildings. Like that terrifying bunker of a Con Ed building at Flatbush and Fulton (pictured below), another priority site, which could make for an amazing tall mural project.

30 Flatbush Avenue

Compulsively hyperbolic Borough President Marty Mark(owitz) had this to say about the project: “[W]ho knows—we may even discover Brooklyn’s next Basquiat!” Sure, why not.