The air feels a little cooler and new public artworks are popping up throughout the city. All signs point to Monument Lab. Nicole Steinberg here, Director of Communications. Our biggest project of the year launches this month, bringing in fall with eight public events—and that’s just in September.
Across Philadelphia, 20 artists have been busy installing their monumental projects in time for the September 16 exhibition launch. “Monuments are statements of power and presence in the city. If you had the time, the resources, the power, to build one to something that’s important to you, you would,” says curator Paul M. Farber, in an interview with the William Penn Foundation, one of the project’s major funders. The nontraditional monuments of Monument Lab range from eco-histories to sound installations to digital apps, telling the story of Philadelphia in brand new ways.
On September 8, from 4–9 p.m., visit the Free Library’s Skyline Terrace for the first listen of Emeka Ogboh’s Logan Squared: Ode to Philly, featuring poet Ursula Rucker. On September 13, from 6–9 p.m., catch the first installment of our TED-style Monument Lab Live series, debuting at PAFA with artists Mel Chin, Tania Bruguera, Emeka Ogboh, and RAIR, curators Paul M. Farber and Ken Lum, Jane Golden, and Mayor Jim Kenney.
Then, on Saturday, September 16, it’s the event you’ve been waiting for: Monument Lab officially launches with a Saturday Spotlight event at City Hall, with music and food from 1–4 p.m. Look for a special appearance from Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter of The Roots, and hear from artists Mel Chin, Michelle Angela Ortiz, and Hank Willis Thomas, all working on Monument Lab projects in the City Hall area.