9 cool spots to see outdoor art in NYC

We’re all headed back indoors due to staggering, increasing numbers in the pandemic. Or, if you’re like me, still indoors. Taking the same amount of precaution as always. There are few things that feel truly safe right now. But one of them is outdoor art in NYC. Not just because it’s enriching. But because right now, we need just a bit of that creativity to inspire us.

This is some of the best outdoor art in NYC to come out for now. Stay masked and distanced of course.

Photoville’s free public photography EXHIBITIONS.

New York City’s free premier photo exhibition returns for the ninth year. But this time in a different way, using the virtual community. The annual creative gathering consists of virtual workshops, speaker series, and educational programing. It also features photo exhibitions in public spaces throughout New York City.

Fifth Avenue’s Trove of Treasures outdoor sculpture exhibit.

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Get more info at Fifth Avenue’s website

This year the holidays hit a whole lot harder. But somehow the little things help. Things like the trove of treasures sculptures on Fifth avenue are enough to make me have a decent day. This outdoor art exhibition features holiday pieces, including a taxi and a dreidel along Fifth from 51st to 59th streets. Their website also comes with a map to plan out your walk to find the toys.

Ruth Bader Ginsberg mural.

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This recent mural of RBG by street artist Elle Street art has been featured all over social media and for good reason. Because it’s a really cool mural. Definitely one of the best pieces of outdoor art in NYC to check out now. Also worth the visit for landmark Venerio’s right up the corner where you should head afterwards for some holiday cannolis.

Glow – at the NYBG.

If you need a pick me up, go experience GLOW at The New York Botanical Garden. A new outdoor holiday show at the NYBG Illuminating their landscape and the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory.

NYBG Glow takes place on December 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 and January 1, 2 & 9.

Point of Action at the Flatiron public plaza.

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Designer and architect Nina Cooke John’s Point of Action is the winner of the seventh annual Flatiron Public Plaza Design Installation. In a time when connection is so complicated, the art encourages safe, thoughtful interaction. Six foot circles create nine spotlights. The orange ropes weave through each structure, allowing the viewer to stand in the ‘spotlight’. Although I took this during the day, the Point of Action installation is best experienced at night.

Point of Action is in the Flatiron plaza through the holidays and until the first of the new year.

WHAT PARTY sculpture.

This fall, well known Brooklyn artist Kaws unveiled his new work in midtown Manhattan. Using his signature style, the 20 foot public art installation sits in front of the Seagram building on Park Avenue between 52nd and 53rd street. It features a character previously used in his work, CHUM, who, juxtaposed with the officious building behind him blends both NYC art and architecture.

On display through the end of the year.

The Murals at First Street Green Park.

In 2008 First Street Green converted an abandoned lot on 1st street at Houston and transformed it into a community space. Since then it’s been a special spot in the Lower East Side for emerging artists.

This fall, co-curated by Jersey city artist Theartofwillpower they debuted “Shared Freedom”. A series of street art murals about current events featuring a multitude of talented artists.

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We Await a New Time – By artist Albert Diaz
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Doris Doors.

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Artist Sam Moyer explored the city collecting discarded marble remnants which he then inlaid into poured concrete. The doors (named for the plaza where they stand) are meant to be passed through by those entering or leaving Central Park.

The doors will be up in front of the park through September 21, 2021

Luminaries at Brookfield Place.

So technically this one isn’t outdoors. But go at a quiet time, distanced, and you can still enjoy it for now. The Brookfield Place annual art exhibit is keeping their annual Luminaries tradition alive with the interactive installation.

It’s on view through January 3, 2021.

And, if you’re able to get to Times Square ASAP, you can take a picture with the 2021 sign before it officially goes up. Also, make a wish on a post it and add it to the Confetti Wishing Wall. At midnight it will be released with thousands of others as NYE confetti!

Because we’re all more than ready to get up close and personal with a brand, new year. Like, now.

On view until Wednesday, 12/23 afternoon.

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