NYCxDesign Launches the New Downtown Design District

by | May 5, 2019 | Art, Coming Up, Culture, Events, Featured

NYCxDESIGN is officially coming to Lower Manhattan from May 10-22 with the launch of a new Downtown Design District supported by The Alliance for Downtown New York.  The District made its debut on April 29 as host to the NYCxDESIGN’s 2019 opening event at 3 World Trade Center for AD ART Show, a collection of contemporary works from members of the advertising community that will be displayed digitally in the Oculus at Westfield World Trade Center throughout May.

Revered public art is prolific in Lower Manhattan. In the walkable square mile south of Chambers Street there are dozens of notable pieces — including Noguchi’s Red Cube and Dubuffet’s Group of Four Trees to Jeff Koons’ Balloon Flower — making it a grand, open-air museum.  This year however marks the first time Lower Manhattan welcomes NYCxDesign to celebrate design and further the conversation of how it impacts our everyday lives.

Photo Courtesy of MvVO Art

There are currently over 100 architecture, design and engineering firms located in Lower Manhattan – nearly half of which have relocated to the neighborhood over the past decade – including SOM, Rafael Vinoly, Beyer Blinder Belle, SHoP Architects, Adjaye Associates, and Studio Libeskind. The neighborhood is also home to more than 30 advertising agencies including three of the top four largest firms in the world: GroupM, Momentum, and Omnicom.

“Lower Manhattan is a growing haven for cultural and artistic expression,” said Jessica Lappin, President, Alliance for Downtown New York. “From our long-standing iconic sculptures to the new World Trade Center murals and forthcoming Perelman Performing Arts Center, there’s a momentum building in Lower Manhattan and we’re happy to announce the the Downtown Design District designation to make sure the growth continues.”

Events going on in the Downtown Design District this month span public showings, tours and talks as well as two industry award ceremonies.  Details below.

Art Shows

MVVO ART – AD ART SHOW 2019 At The Oculus at Westfield World Trade Center(April 29-May 31) – AD ART SHOW 2019 brings a curated selection of work from artists working in advertising and design to the oversized digital screens at the Oculus. All art displayed will also be available for purchase. FREE

Zaha Hadid Design Pop-Up (10 Corso Como, May 10-22) – Zaha Hadid Design, in conjunction with concept store 10 Corso Como New York, will unveil a bespoke installation to showcase the ZHD collection of design objects. Referencing the fluid lines of ZHD’s homeware pieces, the 3-meter-tall installation reinterprets 10 Corso Como’s logo through ZHD’s distinctive language. Located adjacent to the store’s main entrance, the installation features CNC milled surfaces and is enhanced by sinuous floor and wall graphics that coherently unify the ensemble. FREE


The Woolworth Building – Designing for the Next Generation (Woolworth Building, May 13 @ 6p) – An informal discussion about the adaptive reuse of a true architectural icon by Alex Saltzman of Alchemy Properties, the developer responsible for the condominium conversion of the The Woolworth Building and Clayton Whitman of the design team responsible for the transformation the 16th floor into a collaborative work place followed by a guided office tour. FREE

Fueling Change Through Design (Woolworth Building, May 14 @ 4p) – A hands-on workshop to envision an innovative product launch in New York. Small groups will develop an organizing idea, imagine local activations, draw upon visual inspiration and define touchpoints to engage New Yorkers. This creative sprint will give an inside look at our process and engage people to be pioneers of change through design. FREE

Brands Bringing It – Dissecting Phygital Retail Experiences (Woolworth Building, May 14 @ 6p) – A discussion with creative minds from SoulCycle, Nike SNKRS, and InStyle Magazine to chat about how brands are responding to the constantly evolving phygital consumer behaviors, and what trends they see in the future. FREET


9/11 Memorial and World Trade Center: Architecture, Urban Planning and History w/ AIANY (WTC Campus, May 11 @ 10a) – Experience the 9/11 Memorial and the World Trade Center site, including the site’s master plan, design and development of each of the main structures–including the 9/11 Memorial and Museum, office towers and transportation hub. The tour ends with a cocktail at DRINKSxDESIGN participant, Eataly’s Osteria della Pace. $25

Renovating Fidi: Skyscrapers, Plazas And The Impact Of Zoning W/ AIANY (TBA, May 12 @ 10:30a) – The tour focuses on Lower Manhattan’s significant spires of the 1930s, plus the reuse of older structures. Highlights include buildings by SOM, Pei Cobb Freed, Kevin Roche, Philip Johnson, Davis Brody, Tsao & McKown, and Frederic Schwartz, plus a final stop at DRINKSxDESIGN participant, The Beekman Hotel. $30

Architectural Tour of the Oculus at Westfield WTC (Oculus, May 15 @ 5p) – A brief walking tour led by Isolde Brielmaier, PhD – Executive Director & Curator, Arts, Culture & Community, that explores the space and architecture of the Oculus and surrounding area of Westfield World Trade Center. Meet at 4:50pm at the Concierge desk. First come, first serve basis with a 15 person capacity. FREE.

Discover the Water Street Corridor w/ AIANY  (Water Street, May 19 @ 10:30a) – This tour focuses on modern aspects of the historic Financial District, including a final stop at 10 Corso Como, a DRINKSxDESIGN participant in the Seaport. Highlights include buildings by Pei Cobb Freed, SOM, Norman Jaffe, Emery Roth & Sons, Frederic Schwartz, SHOP, and Hanrahan Meyers. $25.

Award Ceremonies

The One Show (Cipriani’s, May 10 @ 6p) – The One Show is one of the most prestigious awards competitions in advertising, design, interactive and branded entertainment. Judged every year by top industry professionals, a Gold Pencil is the ultimate symbol of creative excellence. $500

Annual NYCxDESIGN Awards and ICFF Party (Pier 17, May 20) – Presented by Interior Design Magazine and ICFF, the 4th annual NYCxDESIGN Awards and ICFF Party will take place May 20th at Pier 17 in the revitalized Seaport District, NYC. The ICFF Party immediately follows the NYCxDESIGN Awards and is presented by ICFF and Interior Design Magazine. The Gala Party features open bar, passed hors d’oeuvres and live entertainment. $100

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