Annie Block , Mark McMenamin -- Interior Design, 11/1/2010 12:11:00 PM
It’s a uniquely New York phenomenon: walking straight past your own building—and not recognizing it, because the scaffolding that’s been outside for years has just been removed. The ubiquity of these eyesores in plywood and iron inspired Rodney Durso, a graphic designer turned painter, to found ArtBridge, a nonprofit that transforms some of the city’s 1 million linear feet of bare scaffolding into temporary showcases for emerging talents.
The second installment, “ArtBridge 2010: In Plain Site,” just began a yearlong run on scaffolding fronting a row of prewar apartment buildings near Chelsea’s contemporary-art galleries. A panel of curators—including Interior Design Hall of Fame member Gisue Hariri, Diller Scofidio + Renfro’s Charles Renfro, and AIA New York executive director Rick Bell—chose 25 local artists from the 200 entries. Each original work, regardless of medium, is enlarged to 4 feet high and up to 25 feet wide, then printed on a proprietary vinyl substrate that’s weatherproof and fade-resistant. Following the exhibition, the vinyl will be cut up and turned into one-of-a-kind tote bags by Urban Samaritan, which provides employment and skills training to the homeless.