The second IdeasCity Festival took place in downtown Manhattan from May 1–4, 2013. IdeasCity was founded in 2011 by the New Museum, New York, as an unprecedented collaborative initiative that involves hundreds of arts, education, and community organizations in an ongoing, multi-platform discussion on the future of cities around the globe. Guided by the belief that arts and culture are essential to the continued health and vitality of urban centers everywhere, IdeasCity partners work together to exchange ideas, propose solutions, share with the public, and effect change.
The IdeasCity Festival in New York began on Wednesday, May 1 with a keynote address by Joi Ito, Director of MIT Media Lab, followed by a daylong conference on Thursday, May 2, with mayors and visionary leaders representing a range of disciplines. A series of participatory Workshops took place on Friday, May 3, followed by several evening events. On Saturday, May 4, an innovative StreetFest along the Bowery featured 125 local artists, architects, poets, technologists, historians, community activists, entrepreneurs, and ecologists who shared their ideas of Untapped Capital, the overarching theme of this year’s Festival. Throughout the Festival, over one hundred independent projects, large-scale installations, murals, site-specific projections, exhibitions, and public programs, were presented around downtown Manhattan, many of which enlivened unexpected areas of the neighborhood.
“As an institution dedicated to new art and new ideas, the New Museum strongly believes that the cultural community is essential to the vitality of the future city,” said Lisa Phillips, Toby Devan Lewis Director, New Museum. “We also believe that the cultural sphere is still a relatively untapped source of enormously powerful creative capital, especially in its potential to stimulate economic development and foster greater innovation in other fields. The IdeasCity initiative is an unprecedented step in expanding both our institution’s mission and its potential as a community hub, drawing the creative population together as agents for change.”