This weekend the streets of NYC will be teeming with ‘psycho-paths’ – no news to some, but certainly good news to those who are fans of psychogeography. From September 11 to 14, over one hundred local and international artists will transform NYC’s gritty, fodder-rich streets into a laboratory for exploring the urban environment – all thanks to Conflux 2008. The four-day event includes open-air art installations, interactive performances, street art interventions, DIY media workshops, artist-led walking tours, and some pretty fascinating panel discussions and gadgets.
Read on for a sampling of just how innovative and adventurous things are going to get!
This year marks the five year anniversary of Conflux, and the festival has set up shop in Greenwich Village at the Center for Architecture (a.k.a. Conflux HQ). Hosted by Christina Ray (founder of New York art space Glowlab), and a team of New York-based curators, the event is a wildly diverse celebration of contemporary psychogeography, “the investigation of everyday urban life through emerging artistic, technological and social practice.”
Featured projects include Botanicalls walking tours of Manhattan “narrated” by plants; an iPod video and cell-phone-instructed scavenger hunt through the East Village; an expedition to discover the underground rivers and streams of New York; an interactive installation of New York City trash; Urban Fiber Flotsam’s street spun textiles; an inflatable, Self-Sustainable Chair; an enviro-monitoring CO2rset, solar-powered Morse Code workshops; and “the $1k Giveaway” by the Federation of Students and Nominally Unemployed Artists.
The festival’s keynote speaker is Chris Carlsson, author of the recently-published book: ‘Nowtopia: How pirate programmers, outlaw bicyclists, and vacant-lot gardeners are inventing the future today’.
“People from a wide variety of backgrounds and cultures come together at the festival to re-imagine the city as a playground, a space for positive change and an opportunity for civic engagement…From architects to skateboarders…Conflux is attended by people of differing backgrounds who share a common desire to understand, explore, and ultimately heighten their enjoyment of the urban environment while learning how to sustain and improve it. Conflux visitors are introduced to the ways cutting-edge artists utilize performance, visual art and music to address topics including the environment, sustainable development, the increased presence of technology in cities, emerging trends in social/local networking and ways we can humanize the urban experience by encouraging dialogue amongst communities.” – Conflux website
Stay tuned for more detailed coverage on individual projects to be presented at Conflux 2008!