With Festival of Ideas Approaching, Bowery Businesses’ Metal Shutters Get Murals

04/26/2011 1:03 PM |

Unknown artist at left (Ligon?), Deborah Kass and pulp, ink. at right.
  • Unknown artist at left (Ligon?), Deborah Kass and pulp, ink. at right.

The Festival of Ideas for the New City, that massive conference/exhibition/party/street fair/incubator project that, beginning next Wednesday, will bring virtually every Downtown arts group or institution together around the theme of sustainable urbanism, is making its presence felt on Bowery—and the worms haven’t even crawled out yet!

LES blog Bowery Boogie noticed that one of the Festival of Ideas’ public projects, After Hours: Murals on the Bowery, is partially complete. For After Hours, over a dozen artists—including Mary Heilmann, Deborah Kass, Glenn Ligon, Barry McGee, Rirkrit Tiravanija and Lawrence Weiner—will be painting murals on the metal shutters of longtime kitchen supply businesses along Bowery, so that when they close for the night the street becomes a giant public art gallery.

Another metal shutter mural in progress last night.
  • Another metal shutter mural in progress last night.

BB also received the above shot from a tipster of a painter, allegedly working for billboard painters Colossal Media, working on another After Hours shutter mural from a diagram. This progress and several other completed murals suggest that this project will be ready long before the Festival of Ideas launches next Wednesday—these works will also remain on view for two months, whereas most of the the five-day festival’s hundreds of projects will be far more ephemeral.