Must-See Long Island City
by Michael Hsu, 09/23/2014
SculptureCenter. Photo: Michael Moran
Long Island City's industrial spaces are home to many sculptors' studios, so it's no surprise that the neighborhood is one of the best places to view avant-garde, large-scale artwork. One venue not to miss is the Maya Lin–designed SculptureCenter, which is among the City's most magnificent exhibition spaces—and which increased greatly in size and scope with its renovations, completed for an October 2014 reopening. Housed in a former trolley-repair shop that was built in 1908, the museum features a huge ground-level gallery with brick walls, soaring ceilings and an intricate framework of exposed iron beams. The overhaul added a lobby and courtyard gallery to the center while installing a more traditional white cube in the downstairs exhibition space, which retains its maze of skinny hallways, alcoves and concrete archways as a setting for smaller-scale artwork. Over on the shore of the East River, Socrates Sculpture Park presents an ever-changing assortment of sculpture and art installations, mostly by emerging artists. And to get a taste of how disciplines collide, stop by the Flux Factory, which hosts sporadic exhibitions and events, including a monthly potluck dinner and art salon, sometimes with live music.