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Mission: Creative Time, a not-for-profit arts presenter, fosters artistic experimentation in the public realm.
History: Creative Time was founded thirty years ago in the midst of a historic time for the arts—one which fostered the birth of the city beautification movement, created the National Endowment for the Arts, and witnessed artists extending their practice outside the confines of the gallery and into the public realm. Almost immediately, Creative Time became an international leader in presenting new works by visual artists, architects, performers, musicians, poets, and choreographers in overlooked, neglected, and even abandoned public spaces. Since then, Creative Time has continued to be recognized for commissioning, producing, and presenting adventurous public arts projects that invigorate urban spaces, celebrate public life, and embrace New York City’s rich diversity beyond racial, economic, and age factors.
From milk cartons, storefronts, billboards, and deli coffee cups to the Brooklyn Bridge Anchorage, Grand Central Terminal, skywriting over Manhattan, and Tribute in Light, the temporary light memorial to September 11, 2001, Creative Time has historically been the vanguard organization for presenting untried and timely art in unexplored places. Creative Time’s work preserves public space as a realm for free expression and exchange while introducing the public to emerging artistic practices. Lastly, Creative Time adapts easily to new circumstances, while embracing change and innovation in creative practices.
Of the thousands of artists with whom Creative Time has collaborated, many are now accepted in the pantheon of late-twentieth century art. Vito Acconci, Laurie Anderson, Ann Carlson, Diller + Scofidio, David Byrne, Philip Glass, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Spalding Gray, Red Grooms, Cai Guo-Qiang, Hans Haacke, Jenny Holzer, Gary Hume, Bill T. Jones, Takashi Murakami, Shirin Neshat, Nam June Paik, Martin Puryear, Steve Reich, Vernon Reid, Alison Saar, Sonic Youth, Elizabeth Streb, Thomas Struth, and William Wegman are only a few of the more familiar names among Creative Time’s alumni. The organization has also cultivated rewarding partnerships with a sweeping range of cultural institutions that includes Dia: Chelsea, El Museo del Barrio, the Kitchen, Lincoln Center, the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, MTA Arts for Transit, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Municipal Art Society, the New Museum of Contemporary Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and The World Financial Center Arts and Events Program. From collaborating artists and presentation partners to the extraordinary spaces that the organization invigorates with public art, Creative Time is reflective of the eclectic and vibrant spirit that is New York City.