Mel Chin, the renowned artist and Black Mountain College Legacy Fellow at UNC Asheville for 2017-18, is using his fellowship to engage students across disciplines in large-scale projects for even larger audiences. Working with students in art, engineering and new media, Chin’s plans include huge physical and “AR” (augmented reality) installations in Times Square in the heart of New York City, beginning on Earth Day, April 22, 2018.
“It takes a big team to do this, and this is an ideal situation,” says Chin, known for his conceptual and interactive art dealing with contemporary issues. “With these huge projects happening, this fellowship felt like the opportune moment to make and to teach, to give everything I know to others. We’re at the age where you have to distribute your knowledge, and it’s also about how to make, how to be challenged by the reality we live in and respond.”
The exact nature of the installation is still being developed by Chin and artist collaborators, working together with teams of UNC Asheville students. Chin says he is engaged in talks about the installation with Microsoft Corporation, New York’s Metropolitan Transit Authority, the Queens Museum, and No Longer Empty, a Manhattan arts organization that places community-responsive exhibitions and education programs in unique spaces.
Originally published October 16, 2017.