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LMCC’s Arts Center at Governors Island. Photo: Zachary Tyler Newton.

Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Establishes Arts Center on Governors Island

The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (LMCC) announced today that it will open a permanent arts space on New York Harbor’s Governors Island in September. Conceived as an incubator for artistic innovation and a public space to engage in cultural dialogue, LMCC’s Arts Center at Governors Island will be housed in a forty-thousand-square-foot nineteenth-century building and will host artist residencies and a range of other programming.

“We are thrilled to create a space on Governors Island that fosters curiosity and engagement with artists’ research, development, and presentation,” said Lili Chopra, LMCC’s executive director of artistic programs. “As artists seek serene spaces to work and share practices with audiences, LMCC’s Arts Center meets this need in a compelling way. The newly renovated Arts Center is designed for larger exhibitions and more public programs, enabling greater depth and insight into the artistic and creative process.”

LMCC partnered with the Trust for Governors Island to revamp the venue, which was a former ordnance warehouse and military office space. Its inaugural season will include the exhibition “Michael Wang: Extinct in New York,” which will delve into Wang’s ongoing investigation into the ecology of New York City—the artist will exhibit plants that were native to the area but were wiped out due to climate change and urbanization—and a large-scale installation by Yto Barrada. The Moroccan multimedia artist will examine the environmental elements threatening Tangier Island, Virginia; the colonial past of Tangier, Morocco; and the military history of Governors Island.

Commenting on the intiative, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said: “We are unlocking the potential of Governors Island by investing in arts, culture and education. The public programing and free workspaces at LMCC’s Arts Center will provide an affordable place for artists to work while continuing to grow Governors Island as a creative hub for New Yorkers from across the five boroughs.”

The arts center will be open to the public from September to October 2019 and will reopen in May 2020. More details about its programming will be announced in June.  

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