Must-See Long Island City
by Michael Hsu, 10/02/2013
"One of us may have been sleeping, so I'll try telling you again tonight." (2013), by David McQueen. Courtesy, Socrates Sculpture Park
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. 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. Downstairs, a maze of skinny hallways, alcoves and concrete archways provides a more intimate setting for smaller-scale artwork. Meanwhile, an extensive makeover, which will redo the lobby and add a courtyard gallery, has begun; it's due for completion in late 2014. 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 (check fluxfactory.org for details), including a monthly potluck dinner and art salon, sometimes with live music.