New York City – To celebrate the history of immigration on the Lower East Side of New York City, a four-artist team created Mall-Terations, a temporary art installation on the Allen Street pedestrian mall between Houston and Delancey Streets. Allen Street is also known as the “Avenue of the Immigrants.” The installation was part of an ongoing effort to revitalize the neighborhood.
Artists Carolina Cisneros, Marcelo Ertorteguy, Mateo Pinto, and Sara Valente created five different “compass benches” made of old wooden construction barriers and car wheels. The team used the construction barriers as benches, fixing one end of the bench to a pivot on the ground and attaching the other end to the car wheel. Pedestrians crossing the mall could sit on the benches and pivot around in a circle to get a 365-degree view of their surroundings.
Underneath and around the rotating benches, the artists painted maps, charts, timelines, and dates and places highlighting the neighborhood’s cultural diversity and the vibrant history of Allen Street. The pieces were installed from October 2010 through the summer of 2011.