If you’re like me, when you see a post on Instagram, that makes you want to go visit a place or experience a certain activity, you save it so you won’t forget. That’s exactly what I did when I began to see videos and pictures of the blue-hued, planetary feeling, Artechouse: Celestial exhibition. I’m always intrigued when a new attraction pops up in the city, this one was no different and I made an effort to go see it.
Once inside you are instructed to watch a video all about Artechouse, the artists, the artwork, and the technology that makes the showcase happen. We learned that the Celestial exhibition was filled with predominantly shades of blue because it was inspired by the Pantone color of the year for 2020, Classic Blue. The colors are meant to transport you to the skies and offer peace while opening your imagination.
Next is the exhibition itself, in this case, the mezzanine area first which included a very realistic bar scene which is described as NHKS42200 Bar Illusion. This 3D Hologram was inspired by the 1942 painting Nighthawks by Edward Hopper and depicts downtown bar scenes, one in 1942 and one in 2022, with the same characters in each scene. The goal of this piece is for observers to reflect on the differences and similarities of the people in different periods.
Finally, it’s time to see the real showstopper an immersive part of the broiler room which is filled with the light show from every corner. Synced perfectly to the light show is a soundtrack of tech or house music, ebbing and flowing swiftly or slowly to the changing patterns and scenes that are projected onto the walls.
I would suggest you try and find a bench of a wall to lean your back up against so you can get a full view of the array of different shapes and colors. My next suggestion is if you are going to sit on the floor since there isn’t much seating, is to find the free small round cushions to sit on, that the exhibition offers. We didn’t hear an announcement about these, and since the exhibition space is dark we didn’t see them. So we ended up sitting on the floor without them. Needless to say, it can get uncomfortable sitting on a hard floor for a few hours.
What’s it Like:
As you sit and watch the exhibition and hear the music, you’ll feel like you’re in a mix of a museum and a club. The pictures changing before you will keep your attention as you try to figure out what if anything that picture looks like and the music will make you want to dance. While at the same time, the entire space is very calming. So much so that my friend and I commented on how some parts of the exhibit made us want to take a nap. I know it sounds weird, and it is, you’ll just have to experience it for yourself to fully understand.
Pack your patience if you want to take pictures because EVERYONE is taking pictures. While others even dance to the music, for the most part, these exhibits are huge photo opportunities. So if you want to grab a few shots.. or many, go right ahead everyone is taking pictures of themselves and the exhibit. Just keep in mind the Artechouse photography regulations.
Need more time to take the perfect shot? For the most part, the staff wasn’t kicking people out, they just want to ensure that people were sticking to social distancing and mask-wearing. On their website, they even mention when space is allowed people can stay past their allotted time slot. This is exactly what we got to do, which allowed us to watch the exhibition more than once and capture a nice amount of content. Making the price and time you spend going there a bit more worth it, in my opinion.
We only left once we finally got hungry and wanted to find a restroom. Which was easy to find because the Chelsea Market restrooms are located right next to the exit of the exhibit.
Good to Know:
- What is Artechouse: In a nutshell, the Artechouse’s mission is to showcase how the combination of art, technology, and science through emerging artists’ works can educate and empower artists and their audience.
- Where is the next one: You may be saying “This looks like something I want to see, when is the next one?” Although Celestial is finished Geometric Properties is open in NYC through 9.6.21. Artechouse likes to play coy and only announces its next exhibition when the end of the current exhibition is approaching. Follow them on IG to keep an eye out for announcements.
- Cost: For NJ and NY residents it cost $22.49 for a weekday. The prices go up on the weekends, and they also sell out very fast. Make sure to bring your ID so they can verify you bought the right ticket. If you are a first responder, military, senior, or student there is also a discount. For non-NJ or NY residents, there is no discount, or at least at the time there wasn’t.
- Where is it: 439 W 15th Street (in a previously unoccupied broiler room inside Chelsea Market)
Artechouse currently hosts exhibits in NYC, D.C., its first location, and Miami Beach, so if you live in or around those cities be sure to follow the Artechouse Instagram! Have you been to an Artechouse exhibit in your city? Is this something you would go see? Let me know in the comments! -T.S.