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An abandoned building on Governor’s Island, one of the many to house the fourth annual Governor’s Island Art Fair, Sept. 2-25, 2011
An abandoned building on Governor’s Island, one of the many to house the fourth annual Governor’s Island Art Fair, Sept. 2-25, 2011

GOV ISLAND BATTENS DOWN

Aug. 25, 2011

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Hurricane Irene is putting a damper on this weekend's planned cultural offerings on Governors Island, the 172-acre spot of land just off the southern tip of Manhattan that is becoming something of an arts mecca. So if you planned on getting down to the Dave Matthews Band on Saturday, Aug. 27, think again. Every program and event scheduled for the weekend of Aug. 26-28, 2011, has been cancelled or postponed, due to the impending storm.

Hurricane Irene has also pulled the plug on the opening reception for “The Truth I Am You,” a "floating poem" co-presented by the Cause Collective and the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Art. Originally scheduled to open on Saturday, Aug. 27, the show has been postponed for an as yet undetermined date.

As for the upcoming Fourth Annual Governor’s Island Art Fair -- assuming the whole compound isn’t wiped flat by Sunday -- it launches on Sept. 2, 2011, free and open to the public “every weekend in September,” through Sept. 25, 2011. The fair is “run by artists, for artists,” and boasts 120 participants from around the globe, who are each given a space in which to mount a show of his or her own work. †Participants are chosen by the New York-based arts group 4heads, all working artists themselves, including the celebrated New York portraitist Zito.

Though the fair doesn't have any art stars, it does have the appeal of its unorthodox location: the eerie nooks and crannies of the island’s abandoned military barracks. More than half of the artists hail from the New York area, but this year’s roster does include a handful of visitors from abroad, including Canadian Naomi Campbell -- no relation to the temperamental fashion model -- Morocco-based Elizabeth Zans and Swiss sculptor Barbara Staib. Sculptor Shelby Voice has even exhibited at the State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersberg, Russia. A number of corresponding events, such as open studios and workshops, are also planned to take place throughout the month.


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