Get Ready for NYCxDesign’s 2023 Fall Activation ~ October 12-18




NYCxDesign Awards 2022, Landing at PENN1

NYCxDESIGN’s fall activation, Design Pavilion, serves to kickstart the months of preparation that lead towards NYCxDESIGN Festival 2024.  By highlighting architecture and sustainable building materials, these installations draw pubic attention to the City’s design industries, stellar sustainable practices and NYCxDESIGN’s role in gathering and galvanizing the broad coalition of design that powers New York City and enriches the world.

Design Pavilion. Image credit: Katalina Aurora

This year’s edition will include three thought-provoking installations that are free and open to the public, conceptualized by creative visionaries across disciplines and the globe, including Shanghai-based architecture studio llLabworld-renowned lighting design firm L’Observatoire Internationalformer Super Bowl Champion and NFL defensive end Michael Bennett who is now exploring architecture as the Founding Principal and Creative Director at Studio Kër, Stockholm-based industrial design studio Form Us with Love, Marjorie Guyon of the I Was Here project, and Marc Aptakin, Roy Husdell, and Yoel Meneses of Yes We Are Mad.

Pratt Installation 2022. Image credit: Katalina Aurora

This October 12-18, NYCxDESIGN will present Design Pavilion, New York’s premier public design exhibition, for another year of experiential installations that engage, inform and inspire. Taking place during Archtober – New York’s month-long celebration of architecture – this year’s edition of Design Pavilion will feature three activations by creative visionaries from multiple disciplines that evoke motifs of materiality, sustainability, social justice, and more. Two built installations, Bamboo Cloud and Public Display in the Meatpacking District’s Gansevoort Plaza, will act as ‘urban oases’ for passersby as well as temporary forums designed to inspire community gathering, productive conversation, and personal reflection. The third exhibition, I Was Here, will be a digital art projection on the World Trade Center Podium, a bold statement reflecting on our country’s legacy of enslavement and the wish to heal wounded sites.


Look forward to BAMBOO CLOUD and PUBLIC DISPLAY – Open 11am-9pm Daily, October 12-18, at Gansevoort Plaza; I WAS HERE – Open 7pm-9pm Daily, October 12-18, at The Podium at One World Trade Center

Bamboo Cloud, an installation designed by IILab,. Image courtesy NYCxDesign

Bamboo Cloud, October 12-18 located at Open 11am to 9pm daily, at Gansevoort Plaza.

Bamboo Cloud focuses on the relationships between inherent material properties and their potential applications beyond convention. Traditionally, bamboo is applied on the scale of handcraft, yet now, it has been recently popularized as the most organic, sustainable construction material beyond its commonly applied fields. 

The advantage of using bamboo has not been thoroughly understood, and thus to date, most applications have remained superficial.  But the llLab. architects have boldly explored and investigated bamboo’s performance extremes to ensure optimal efficiency.  During prototyping, bamboo strips, less than 1/4 inch thick and 1/4 inch wide, were used to test the threshold for lightweight construction. The process places particular emphasis on the unique material properties inspiring a wider range of construction applications in permanent architecture.

Woven through methods similar to basket weaving, Bamboo Cloud’s overall construction and creativity breaks with convention. Bamboo Cloud, will hover over the Pier’s promenade, a porous volume made of woven bamboo strips, naturally finding its form through resiliency of the material.

World renowned architectural lighting design firm, LObservatoire International, collaborated with llLab. by washing Bamboo Cloud aglow with light.  Partnered with Philips Color Kinetics, suppliers of advanced technology high efficiency lighting, they bring Bamboo Cloud to another level of beauty.

Public Display, an installation designed by Michael Bennett, Studio Kër. October 12-19 at Gansevoort Plaza. Image courtesy NYCxDesign

Public Display, October 12-18 at Gansevoort Plaza

Artist and spacial designer Michael Bennett found inspiration in the profound interplay of materials and space. His exploration delved into the captivating world of Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT), a construction material used by Michael as an artistic medium that helped him combine the weight of mass, the lightness of space, and the poetry of connection.

Balanced to perfection, Public Display, relies on the qualities of CLT, in its strength and beauty,  elevating the concept of “mass” to an art form.  Tension arises when a weighty object occupies space, yet it instills a sense of peace and tranquility. The installation not only holds substance in form, it also evokes aspirations, dreams, and maybe the impossible; a spatial composition crafted to facilitate public gathering for connection and communication. 

In pursuit of pure geometry and artistic expression, Public Display holds space for dialogue, stories of human experience, revelation, and introspection with a robust program of conversations focused on sustainability, repurposing, and the elimination of the world’s waste.

‘I Was Here,’ a digital presentation ~ Conceptualized by Marjorie Guyon, video and animation co-created by Marc Aptakin, Roy Husdell, and Yoel Meneses of Yes We Are Mad. October 12-22 on The Podium of One World Trade Center. Image courtesy NYCxDesign

I Was Here, October 12-22 on The Podium of One World Trade Center

Collaborative in nature, the ‘I Was Here’ project is a series of public art and public history installations that serve as a mindful, reverent, and powerful acknowledgment of American history and presented in a variety of mediums and methods. 

For Design Pavilion, I Was Here combines art and design to depict the significance of memory, history, and ancestry and how all three come together to begin the process of healing ‘wounded’ sites by the legacy of enslavement around the United States.

Animated images of the Ancestor Spirit Portraits will debut in New York City on all four sides of the World Trade Center’s Podium, rising 200 feet above the ground. This site, so deeply significant to our recent American experience, also overlooks New York Harbor and the intersection of Wall Street and the East River, the second largest  auction site for enslaved Africans in the country.

NYCxDESIGN is honored to present I Was Here as a Design Pavilion project and to roll out the breadth and depth of its meaning over the next year in NYC through projections, digital experience, Augmented Reality, monumental Spirit Portraits, soundscape, poetic narratives, and dance, as we build out an experience to honor and commemorate those whose names we will never know and, in so doing, acknowledge the wound in our citizenship that enslavement created. 

Partnered with creators Marc Aptakin and Roy Husdell at Yes We are Mad, and Mark Domino of Spireworks, Design Pavilion creates this introduction to NYC as a subtle Dreamtime experience. 

This is the first in a series of historic story-telling through art and design.  This inauguration of the project in Lower Manhattan will be a silent testament to honor the power, beauty, dignity and grace of those who were instrumental in building the foundation of our country.

NYCxDesign Awards Crowd Image.

NYCxDESIGN presents Design Pavilion, New York City’s outdoor public design exhibition and activation, engaging the community in delightful installations and conscious exploration into social and cultural topics through a design lens.  Design Pavilion is free and open to all.

Studies in material strength and sustainability, both these structures presented are created to encourage community gathering, the sharing of ideas and experiences, or quiet reflection. 

In addition, NYCxDESIGN will present a digital graphic projection on The Podium of the World Trade Center, a bold statement addressing social and civil liberties and the wish to heal our country.  

After their debut in NYC, all Design Pavilion installations are repurposed and travel to other destinations for continued impact.  

Take a look back to NYCxDesign – The Festival May 18-25, 2023.

Follow NYCxDesign on Facebook and Instagram.