Art Project for Lower East Side

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A temporary public art installment is planned for First Street Green Park

Lower East Side residents will soon be able to enjoy "The 12x12 Project: A World Policy Institute Project on Smart Consumption," a public art installation planned for the small park sandwiched between two buildings at 33 E. 1st St, near Houston Street.

According to the project's proposal, the work "is a temporary 12-foot by 12-foot shed-like structure, taking the form of a book-like house that consists of 'living' walls based on the DNA double helix weave-like design."

There will also be an "upside down umbrella or butterfuly rooftop with a waterproof layer and root barrier" which will collect rainwater and channel it into a collection barrel to be reused.

During the day, the small structure will remain open and will house works of various artists, acting as both a piece of art itself and as a tiny exhibition space for other local artists. It's designed by artist Simon Draper, who said that the goal of the project is to explore the role of the artist in bigger societal issues and to "find poetry in the seemingly mundane and transform it so that others might enjoy the everyday with a brighter eye."

There will also be several ways for the public to interact with the works. Viewers will be asked to reflect on the concept of houses - the one before them, their own, the idea of the planet itself as a "house" - and then that input will be shared on the web and through social media.

The location for the project, which has previously been set up in other cities around the country, was chosen for its high visibility and foot traffic location as well for the park's existing partnership with Fourth Arts Block, an artists' group.

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