“The Center for Tactical Magic’s Tactical Ice Cream Unit (TICU) rolls through the city in an act of intervention that replaces cold stares with frosty treats and nourishing knowledge. Combining a number of successful activist strategies into one mobile ice cream truck, the TICU is the alter ego of the police force’s mobile command center. Although the TICU appears to be a mild-mannered vending vehicle, it harbors a host of high-tech surveillance devices⎯including a 12-camera video surveillance system, acoustic amplifiers, GPS, satellite internet, and a media transmission studio capable of disseminating live audio/video⎯and of course, ice cream. With every free cone handed out, the sweet-toothed citizenry also receives printed information developed by local progressive groups…”
Encounter the Arthur Magazine “Applied Magic(k)” columnists The Center for Tactical Magic and their Tactical Ice Cream Unit at…
DEMOCRACY IN AMERICA: CONVERGENCE CENTER AT PARK AVENUE ARMORY IN NEW YORK CITY
“SEPTEMBER 21 TO 27
12 TO 10 PM DAILY*
OPENING RECEPTION: SEPTEMBER 21, 2 TO 10 PM
643 PARK AVENUE BETWEEN 66TH AND 67TH STREETS
PRESENTED IN ASSOCIATION WITH THE PARK AVENUE ARMORY
*Open from 2 to 10 pm on September 21 and from 12 to 6:30 pm on September 23.
After traveling across the country to glean perspectives from artists and activists on the state of democracy, Creative Time’s year-long program Democracy in America: The National Campaign culminates in the “Convergence Center”: a major exhibition, participatory project space, and meeting hall mounted in New York City’s Park Avenue Armory. The Convergence Center at Park Avenue Armory will provide an activated space to both reflect on and perform democracy and will be punctuated by speeches by leading political thinkers as well as community leaders and activists throughout the run of its program. These orations are organized by Creative Time in collaboration with The Nation Institute. As one of the largest unobstructed spaces in New York, the non-traditional setting of the Armory features interiors—such as its vast drill hall and historic period rooms—that are ideal for artists presenting multifaceted visual and performing arts productions.
Work by more than 40 artists will fill the Armory’s period rooms on the first, second, and fourth floors as well as Wade Thompson Drill Hall. Creative Time will present the four performative national public art commissions made for Democracy in America in the Convergence Center at Park Avenue Armory. Some of the projects featured include giant, silvered surveillance balloons by Jon Kessler; wearable art by dBFoundation; an installation by Critical Art Ensemble and the Institute for Applied Autonomy of the physical artifacts of the 2004 FBI investigation of Steve Kurtz; a 20-foot-tall counter-surveillance tower by Jenny Polak; a nine-foot wooden hobbyhorse sculpture by Allison Smith; and Duke Riley’s functional replica of America’s first submarine. In addition, curator Sofía Hernández Chong Cuy organized the inclusion of work by four international artists that will offer incisive viewpoints on the notion of democracy and some of its core principles: nation building, freedom of speech, and labor rights. Three participatory projects will travel to parks in Queens and Brooklyn in early September before convening at the Convergence Center.
A diverse group of political thinkers, writers, theorists, and activists will be invited to deliver speeches on various subjects—including local city politics, the war on “terror,” the art world, and cultural production. Speeches will occur throughout each day the Convergence Center is open, punctuating the activity of the Wade Thompson Drill Hall’s participatory projects and social space. As speakers approach the front of the hall, they will be invited to select a podium from an array designed by artist Paul Ramirez Jonas—from a modest soapbox to an intimidating rostrum. A 40-foot backdrop by artist Chris Stain will frame the speakers in a social realist scene rendered through the technique of hand-cut stencils. In addition, select artists from the show—including Rachel Mason, and Pia Lindman—will give special performances. Lastly, local activist organizations will be invited to distribute information from tables set up throughout the space. ”
EXHIBITION AND SPEECH SERIES WITH OVER 40 ARTISTS, INCLUDING:
Erick Beltrán, Arthur Magazine “Applied Magic(k)” columnists The Center for Tactical Magic, Critical Art Ensemble and the Institute for Applied Autonomy, Annabel Daou, dBFoundation, Hasan Elahi, Feel Tank, Luca Frei, Chitra Ganesh & Mariam Ghani, Group Material, John Hawke, Sharon Hayes, Kenneth Tin-Kin Hung, InCUBATE, Magdalena Jitrik, Matt Keegan, Jon Kessler, Olga Koumoundouros & Rodney McMillian, Steve Lambert, Ligorano/Reese, Pia Lindman, Rachel Mason, Carlos Motta, Angel Nevarez & Valerie Tevere, Trevor Paglen, Cornelia Parker, Jenny Polak, Steve Powers, Greta Pratt, Paul Ramírez Jonas, Red76, Duke Riley, Martha Rosler, Dread Scott, Allison Smith, Chris Sollars, Chris Stain, Mark Tribe, United Victorian Workers, Chu Yun, and more.