Wednesday, August 5, 2020

HOPE WANTED Exhibit at NYHS By Polly Guerin

Take Care of Each Other, Kings Theater Brooklyn
As New York City slowly gets back on track, the New York Historical Society is the first museum to reopen on August 14 with an outdoor exhibit, HOPE WANTED NEW YORK CITY UNDER QUARANINE.  As the title indicates, the exhibit takes a look back at New York City's traumatic and recent past, its people and environments. Treating the quarantine of New York City as history the New York Historical Society presents images and interviews  relating to the lockdown as early as April of this year.
       Installed in the museum's rear  courtyard located at West 76th Street between Central Park West and Columbus Avenue, the exhibition also includes a quiet seating area, surrounded by plants where visitors can record their own experiences of the pandemic in an open aided story booth. These oral histories will be archived by the New York Historical Society. 
      Admission to HOPE WANTED is FREE, but access is limited, and face masks are required for
entry, with social distancing enforced through time entry tickets and on-site safety measures. Tickets are available online at nyhistory,org/hopewanted. The exhibition will be open on Thursdays 11 am-5pm for visitors 65+ and to the general public on Fridays from 10 am - 8 pm and Saturdays and Sundays from 11 am-5pm. Audio interviews are accessible to visitors though their cell phones, and exhibition text and audio are offered in both English and Spanish.
     
TIMES SQUARE during Pandemic
"Hope Wanted" is a joint project between writer and human rights activist Kevin Powell and photographer Kay Hickman. At the height of the quarantine they spent and intensive two days, April 8-9, traveling the five boroughs to interview and take photos of ordinary New Yorkers living during an extraordinary 
time of quarantine in New York City.
      Hickman's empathetic photographs of people and their neighborhoods across all five boroughs and Powell's searching interviews  capture both the tragedy of the pandemic as well as the remarkable resilience of New Yorkers---like "Mama Tanya" Fields, an activist and urban famer whose whole family contracted coronavirus, pictured smiling with her six children in the hallway in her Bronx home and photographed on their balcony and in the middle of the street in Queens, Mark Zustovich and Melton Sawyer shar that "self-care has taken anew meaning for us in this era of COVID-19. 
"I'm honored to be part of such a historic exhibit featuring more than 50 of my photographs," said Kay Hickman. "This will be my most important exhibit to date.  In documenting the City at the height of the COVID pandemic you see a rare glimpse of grim and deserted streets, both though Kevin Powell's 12 audio interviews you also get a sense of hope. In viewing this exhibit it is my hope that there is a sense of healing." Kevin Powell is a poet, author and human rights activist and Kay Hickman is a documentary photographer and visionary artist. The exhibition is on views from August 14 to November 29, 2020.
        "Our goal with HOPE WANTED is to honor and celebrate the strength of New Yorkers," said Dr. Louise Mirrer, president and CEO of New York Historical. "We hope this exhibition can offer our visitors a moment of solace to reflect on what they and the city as a whole have experienced in recent months and to better understand this moment in time. We look forward to welcoming everyone back to the New York Historical Society."
       HOPE WANTED is part of All in NYC, Public Art Exhibition, showcasing dozens of programs across the city, and initiative launched by NYC and Company.  The New York Historical Society is located at 170 Central Park West at Richard Gilder Way (77th Street) New York, NY 10024. Follow the museum on social media at @nyhistory on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Tumblr

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