1) Contract Extension Ends Lockout for Long Island Faculty
Over the past two weeks, art faculty at Long Island University were barred access to their studios, classrooms and in some cases, personal belongings. Since August 31st, 400 members of the university faculty union had been locked out of the school when union negotiations with their employer went sour. Both professors and students were protesting against a new contract which included a number of unfair terms such as reduced wages for adjunct professors. This lockout was the first time in American history that university professors had been barred from their classrooms. As of Wednesday, the employer agreed to extend the expired previous contract into early 2017, allowing more time for the union to negotiate a new contract.
2) Renderings of Vessel Artwork go Public
Artist renderings of a new public art piece set to go on display in the Hudson Yards development area of Manhattan have become public. The piece, titled Vessel, will be over 150 feet tall and feature 80 overlapping and interconnected staircases as well as numerous landings, allowing visitors to enjoy the view and take photos at varying heights. Designed by Heatherwick Studios under the direction of Thomas Heatherwick, the sculptural installation is set to open to the public at some point in 2018, forming the centerpiece for the Hudson Yards public garden area.
3) FKA Twigs Announces Halloween Exhibition in London
Avant-garde singer FKA Twigs has announced that she will curate a Halloween-themed art exhibition, set to be shown in London in late October. In August, Twigs announced a mysterious casting call via her social media accounts, asking for talents of all genres, and noting that no style would be “too extreme.” The show, entitled Rooms will feature those performers chosen from the casting call in an immersive installation that will, according to Twigs, take viewers on a “journey of self-analysis.” Twigs’ exhibition is part of the Veuve Clicquot Widow Series, an annual event in London celebrating creativity and culture. Tickets to Rooms are available on the Veuve Clicquot website.
4) Berghain Declared a Cultural Institution by Tax Officials
Legendary Berlin nightclub Berghain has been deemed a cultural institution, at least in the eyes of German tax officials. While the club had previously been treated as an entertainment venue, Berghain took its case to the fiscal courts under threat of rising operational taxes. While initially it seemed the club could not win, due in part to its lack of a stage or apparent breaks for applause following performances, in the end the courts ruled in favor of Berghain’s arguments. This ruling allows the club to enjoy a serious economic advantage, as cultural venues are taxed at 7 percent compared to 19 percent for entertainment ventures.