I recently attended NYU’s ITP Big Screen’s show at the IAC Building, designed by one of my favorite’s Frank Gehry. It is a beautiful building, all the way on the West side Manhattan — which also happens to house Vimeo, one of the largest online video sharing sites. The IAC Building also houses the renown IAC Video Wall, which is one of the largest high-resolution walls in the world. According to wikipedia, “The video wall is driven by 18 projectors and 36 mirrors located in a pressurized dust-free projection space measuring just six feet deep.”. Pretty intense.
Well ITP, NYU’s creative graduate program where students bridge art & technology, offers a semester long course for its students, where small teams work to complete the challenge of creating video for this immense platform — the Big Screen. What I experienced was creative, fun, and everything an ultra-creative graduate program should produce.
Some students made short films, spanning three wide screens, others created interactive pieces where the wall projections simply served as a background for a physical skit, and some created interactive games where the audience participated via their mobile devices.
I am constantly impressed at the things I stumble upon in New York. Aside from the students, and their creative freedom — I was most impressed with the building & the IAC Video Wall. Check out some awesome google images of the wall, for uses beyond ITP’s Big Screens evening. I’m not sure that the building is open to the public on a daily basis, but the ground floor — which houses the video wall — is surrounded by glass walls. Which means, just stroll down 11th avenue in front of Chelsea Piers, and you will be able to peak in and see all of its glory.
I have been feeling so inspired lately. Here are a few reasons why:
I had the luxury of working smack in the center of the Flatiron for the past 3 years. Recently, the office has moved West to Chelsea, and I find myself ever nostalgic. So much so that I make sure to walk back over to the old neighborhood at least 2 or 3 times each week.
The thing about the Flatiron district is that there is so much more to it than its trademark building. In the three years that I spent Monday thru Friday wandering through, it has changed tremendously. It is home to some of my all-time favorite NYC restaurants: ABC Kitchen, Aldea, Greensquare Tavern, & BLT Fish. And home to some awesome after-work bars: Rye House, Raines Law Room, Boqueria & Birreria on the rooftop of Mario Batali’s magnificent Eataly.
The Flatiron district is now bustling with shopping, eating, drinking, and touring. It is really phenomenal — and has become one of my favorite areas in the city. Often on the weekends, I’ll take the L train to Unique Square, and just stroll up through the Flatiron. Stopping at the Museum of Math:
… or the Museum of Sex for a little culture on the way north.
The thing about the Flatiron, is that there are so many pit stops along the way, you could spend your entire day strolling the area. I find it inspiring, and spacious — which is often rare to find in Manhattan. Union Square, Madison Square Park and Madison Square itself provide a range of seats for people-watching, leg-resting & a little bit of romance.
My perfect Flatiron Day would start with a whole wheat crossant, and a large cappuccino from The City Bakery. It was my local bakery for three years. I would stop there for breakfast or lunch — sometimes twice in the same day. I could always be guaranteed something delicious, something fresh & high-quality ingredients. Now when I visit, I always make sure to swing by for a treat or two.
Then after a City Bakery Breakfast, I would stroll for a few minutes, admiring some of the buildings above me.
I might shop for a bit on Fifth Avenue, or stroll over to Broadway and stop by Fish’s Eddy, ABC Carpet, or Whisk. After walking a bit, I would peak into Eataly for an espresso (or a Gelato if its really warm). Then, I would park myself in Madison Square Park for a good hour, just absorbing the energy around me. Some would opt for lunch at Shake Shack, by myself personally would prefer champagne and market fresh food from ABC Kitchen. After lunch, I would catch one of the museums mentioned earlier, for an hour or two max. By now, we are nearing 5PM — museum shut-down time. I would stroll back to Unique Square and sit on the steps until sunset. Now it is almost cocktail time. I would pop into Rye House for a whiskey, and then scope out a delicious spot for dinner. I might even top it off with a bit of karaoke on 17th street. There you go. I ❤ the Flatiron. If you ever can’t find me… I’m probably there. :p