New York City art podcast brings together Ai Weiwei, Danny Meyer and others

New York City art podcast brings together Ai Weiwei, Danny Meyer and others
"Public Art Works" debuts on iTunes, Spotify and Alexa on June 21.

“Public Art Works” debuts on iTunes, Spotify and Alexa on June 21.

New Yorkers have a new podcast to add to their apps.

On June 21, "Public Art Works" debuts on iTunes, Spotify and Alexa, offering a well-rounded look at how public art touches many facets of our lives.

Artists Ai Weiwei, Hank Willis Thomas, Lawrence Weiner, Erwin Wurm and chef/ restaurateur Danny Meyer, as well as other leaders and supporters of the art world, share the mic across six episodes.

The topics range from activism to representation and from feminism to street food but all share the central theme of public art. It’s hosted by actor Jeffrey Wright, who is known for his role as Bernard Lowe in "Westworld" and roles in "The Hunger Games," "Boardwalk Empire," "Casino Royale," "The Manchurian Candidate" and more.

"Public Art Works" is a new podcast by Public Art Fund that features discussions between artists, activists and supporters of the arts about topics relating to public art and its role in our lives.
"Public Art Works" is a new podcast by Public Art Fund that features discussions between artists, activists and supporters of the arts about topics relating to public art and its role in our lives. Photo Credit: Public Art Fund

In the first episode, for example, Thomas and Darren Walker tackle the question of who should be represented by monuments and how we deal with those that recall a painful past.

Another episode pairs Meyer, Wurm, Public Art Fund’s Susan K. Freedman and writer Joe DiStefano for a discussion on Shake Shack and how it was conceptualized out of a Public Art Fund project, and how street food and art have influenced each other.

The podcast is produced by Public Art Fund and SandenWolff, as another way for artists to tell their stories in a way that will reach a wide audience, especially New Yorkers on their commutes.

"We love when our exhibitions can surprise people or make them think of art in a different way, and that was part of the guiding principle for the podcast as well," Kellie Honeycutt, the Public Art Fund’s director of institutional advancement, said. 

The podcast is an "extension" of the Public Art Fund’s mission "to present dynamic and engaging contemporary art that sparks dialogue in the urban environment," Honeycutt said. "Artists are at the core of everything we do, and the podcast is another way for them to tell their stories and share their work with a broad public."

For more information, check out publicartfund.org.

The Public Art Fund is hosting a happy hour drinks and conversation event to celebrate the podcast’s release at The Greene Space (44 Charlton St.) on June 21 at 5:30 p.m. RSVP at publicartfund.org.

Shaye Weaver