The Times Square Alliance announced today that Debra Simon has been named the organization’s new director of public art. Simon will be responsible for programming Times Square with installations and performance art from artists around the world.
President Tim Tompkins said, “As the Alliance celebrates its twenty-fifth year and the completion of the Broadway pedestrian plazas, we pivot towards a vision of Times Square’s public spaces that is not merely functional, but aspirational.” He added, “Welcoming Debra Simon as our new director of Public Art is extremely timely as we join the Global Cultural Districts Network and fully embrace the idea that a robust and independent art program is as important as the standard ‘clean and safe’ mission of a business improvement district.”
Simon most recently served as vice president and artistic director of Arts Brookfield, where she commissioned, produced, and presented works of art as part of a program that invigorates public spaces and supports creativity and innovation in the fields of music, dance, theater, film, and visual art. Previously, Simon served as vice president of marketing for the Alliance for Downtown New York, where she led cultural planning, marketing and community relations for the Wall Street Business Improvement District.
Simon said, “Having worked for a global platform that brought public art to locations around the world, I am excited and very much looking forward to focusing my work on a single location that happens to be a globally recognized and iconic public space.”
Founded in 1992, the Times Square Alliance works to improve and promote Times Square by keeping the neighborhood clean, promoting local businesses, managing area improvements, organizing programming, and producing major annual events including New Year’s Eve, Solstice in Times Square and Taste of Times Square.