The Trust for Governors Island's Art CommisionsGI Program

Governors Island Corporation, d.b.a. The Trust for Governors Island (The Trust)

Funding Received: 2013
New York, NY
Funding Period: 1 year and 5 months
March 20, 2014

Artist- designed mini-golf installed as part of the Figment participatory art festival; photo courtesy of Ronay Menschel

More than any groundhog’s shadow, the opening up of Governors Island’s summer programs permitting process is a sure sign that winter is on its way out. Every year, we open the door to programming partners big and small who activate the Island in creative and exciting ways. In the past, these programs have included Figment, a multi-day participatory art festival; a major sculpture exhibition by Mark DiSuvero and Storm King Art Center; The Childrens Museum of Art “Island Art Outpost;” Make Music New York’s Punk Island; the African Film Festival, and many, many more—really, too many to name.

This year, with OpenHouseGI, in addition to the Island’s many green spaces, nearly two-dozen historic homes, totaling more than 200,000 square feet will be available for programming. Outdoor spaces, including the Colonels Row Festival Grounds, and for the first time, the Play Lawn Oval (part of the Island’s new park spaces) will also be available. Governors Island’s public season opens on May 24, 2014 and will run 7 days a week, for 120 days until the end of September. Governors Island has become a lively and loved destination in large part because of the amazing programs that take place here, all of which are produced by outside partners.

Recent Wins
The opening of our permit program was covered in DNA Info, January 21, 2014. “Artists' 'Bold' Ideas Sought for Governors Island's Mini-Golf Course,” and we read with delight the My Walking Pictures Blog on January 28, 2014, “Governors Island in 2013,” which captured the experience of a visit to Governors Island quite nicely!

One of the things that makes our programming mix so appealing is that we don’t curate it; we don’t develop themes. We strive for broad diversity, but we don’t direct themes or have a “type.” We’d be interested to learn about other venues that feature broad, inclusionary programming policies.