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The Gates | Photo by Morris Pearl/WikiCommons
The Gates | Photo by Morris Pearl/WikiCommons
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New York City Celebrates 50 Years of Art in the Parks

Picture of Rachel Gould
Art & Design Editor
Updated: 16 October 2017
This year, the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation is celebrating five decades of “Art in the Parks”—a long-standing program of public exhibitions. To honor this milestone, NYC Parks will host a lively outdoor art event in Central Park on Saturday, October 21.

From 11am until 3pm, Central Park’s East Pinetum field will be transformed into an exhibition and studio space, free of charge to the art-loving public.

The Art in the Parks program was founded in 1967, and according to the NYC Parks’ website, has since exhibited over 2,000 artworks, including The Gates by Christo and Jean-Claude, Alexander Calder’s world-famous mobile sculptures, and more currently, a soon-to-be-revealed installation by American glass artist, Dale Chihuly.

Chinatsu Ban, V W X Yellow Elephant Underwear/H I J Kiddy Elephant Underwear | Photo by CGP Grey/WikiCommons
Chinatsu Ban, V W X Yellow Elephant Underwear/H I J Kiddy Elephant Underwear | Photo by CGP Grey/WikiCommons

“As NYC Parks’ public art program took shape in the 1960s, artistic events called ‘happenings’ popped up in parks across the city,” NYC Parks explains. “Blurring the line between art and everyday life, these fleeting performances combined sculpture, music, theater, dance, and poetry. They varied in size and sophistication, but always relied on audience participation.”

This month, 50 years of exceptional “happenings” are celebrated with a forthcoming event appropriately titled “It’s Happening!” Consisting of interactive workshops, performances, and, of course, public art, It’s Happening! calls upon the New York City public to come out and participate once again.

It’s Happening! will take place in the East Pinetum field of Central Park, 50 85th Street Transverse, New York, NY 10128, on October 21, 2017 from 11am until 3pm.