Queens bank to be transformed into exhibit space
by Kathleen Lees
Dec 06, 2012 | 2981 views | 0 0 comments | 60 60 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A new art exhibit in Queens will confront issues about the value of money during the economic recession while taking over the vacant Bank of Manhattan Building in Queens Plaza at 29-27 41st Ave.

Approximately 27 artists from 15 countries will showcase their work on the former bank’s three floors for the No Longer Empty’s Exhibit “How Much Do I Owe You?”

“We wanted to include the different nationalities in Queens,” said Lucy Lydon of the diverse group of artists involved in the exhibit.

Lydon is the communications manager for No Longer Empty, an organization founded in 2008 that reclaims vacancies created by the financial crisis and transforms them into exhibit spaces.

No Longer Empty’s previous exhibits have taken place in spaces including the former Tower Records store in SoHo, an old belt factory in Brooklyn, and the Andrew Freedman Home in the Bronx, bringing a hub of art and culture to each new site.

However, while the exhibits have been all across the boroughs, this will be No Longer Empty’s first stop in Queens, according Lydon.

She said the vacant bank being used for the “How Much Do I Owe You?” exhibit will be a symbol of the developing financial market in New York. “This idea makes the idea behind it more accessible to the public through its display,” she said.

The exhibit, which will end on March 13, is scheduled to run for the next three months, as artists will take a look at the new economic landscape through different art works, offering over 30 free public programs, family days and school tours.

Several artists will be contributing to the mix of murals, video, sculptures and participatory work that will be available at the location.

Seattle Artist Chris Jordan will use the clock tower to project images to be seen from nearby elevated subway trains.

Artist Shaun Leonardo will also bring a Tiki Tiki Club to the space that will allow visitors the options to dance. And artist Erika Harrsh will bring giant butterflies constructed out of international currencies to show the fragility of currency markets, along with Colleen Ford, who will demonstrate a series of glass piggy banks filled with her failed lottery tickets, symbolizing a sign of the wasted money and hope during the financial crisis.

Besides art exhibitions, programs for families will include “No Longer Bored Family Days,” which allow children and parents to explore the exhibition during hand-on workshops, and “ArtsConnections,” a program where high school students give space to curate their own show of teen artists.

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