Well, we wish Bucky had been there, but partnering with the current members of the Buckminster Fuller Institute was as inspiring and illuminating as we imagine a night with the man himself might have been. The evening's event was held in a space currently rented by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, an organization that works with commercial real estate partners in Lower Manhattan to connect artists with free space.
This particular venue currently holds an installation by Betty Beaumont, an environmental artist with decades of experience and perspective shaping the commentary her art makes about society and the environment. Her LMCC installation, Boxed In, Boxed Out: The Mobile Studio Project addresses the hurdle artists in Manhattan face as escalating rents and unforgiving landlords squeeze them out of the burrough.
The project included a number of public forums with city officials, artists, urban planners and lawyers, and the space itself has been transformed through a process of literally boxing up the infrastructure of the room, encasing pillars in cardboard.
To open the evening, BFI Executive Director Elizabeth Thompson offered some introductory words, and then Beaumost spoke about her work, launching from the problem of displaced artists to a short discussion about possible solution scenarios, in which artists could be included in a future picture of the Manhattan community as a whole.
After Beaumont and Alex spoke, we heard from Dr. Michael Ben-Eli, who used to work side by side with Fuller, about the Five Core Principles of Sustainability. It was wonderful for the Worldchangers -- and everyone present, we think -- to have the material we're presenting during the book tour complemented and deepened within the context of Dr. Ben-Eli's talk.
All of the evening's proceedings will be available as a podcast soon, so stay tuned...
And a huge thanks to LMCC, Beaumont, BFI (Elizabeth Thompson and Matt Barron), and Brooklyn Brewery, who provided the beer.