“With its bold colors and interactive light display, COMMON GROUND transforms one of Downtown Brooklyn’s signature public spaces into a work of art that will engage visitors while also injecting color and life into our streetscape,” said Downtown Brooklyn President Regina Myer. “We are excited to once again partner with Van Alen Institute and Two Trees on a project that invites everyone to pause, reflect, and come together in this unique immersive installation.”
“Cheryl Wing-Zi Wong’s COMMON GROUND ignites downtown Brooklyn with sound, color, and motion, playfully inviting neighbors and passersby to interact,” said Deborah Marton, Executive Director, Van Alen Institute. “COMMON GROUND’s welcoming presence exemplifies Van Alen Institute’s commitment to inclusive shared joy in public spaces. It’s the perfect spot to welcome in spring, and we thank Downtown Brooklyn Partnership and Two Trees for their partnership in bringing this installation to life.”
“COMMON GROUND creates this playful interruption on the plaza, one of Downtown Brooklyn’s everyday spaces, to bring a new community pavilion to the area,” said artist Cheryl Wing-Zi Wong. “By night, it becomes a large-scale instrument of sorts, responding to environmental audio – you’re encouraged to come sit, sing, play, linger and experience the art.”
Performances are scheduled to activate the space, with the opening night on Wednesday, March 1 at 6:00PM featuring the NuTribe Dance Company and Mark Morris Dance Group teaching artists CocoMotion and Luffy with an improvisational performance in the art of Waacking and Krumping.
The Plaza at 300 Ashland has served as a hub for the arts since its unveiling in 2017, even amid the pandemic. Most recently, it was the site of Soft-Firm’s Drive-Thru art installation. Managed, programmed, and maintained by DBP, the plaza also features a year-round calendar of programming including film screenings, concerts, theater performances, dance and fitness classes, readings, community gatherings, and more – all free and open to the public.
COMMON GROUND is part of Van Alen Institute’s Public Realm R+D program, intended to surface the work of emerging designers and test new strategies to bring people together in public space.