New School 'Creative Lab' to Feature Chicken-Raising Workshop

By Andrea Swalec on September 26, 2012 7:50am 

MANHATTAN — Nearly three months of off-the-wall art and ecology programming at Parsons The New School for Design kicks off this week — with one of the first of dozens of workshops to be co-hosted by none other than a chicken.

"Art, Environment, Action!" classes, talks and performances at Parsons begin Thursday at 6:30 p.m. with a reception and workshop on how to raise an urban flock.

The chicken-raising class, by the Staten Island art collective 5 P.M., is one of many events planned for Parsons' "creative laboratory" running from Sept. 28 through Dec. 15. 

The lineup includes two-day food education and cooking workshops with Chez Panisse chef Jerome Waag, a lesson on how to plant an "anti-cancer garden," and a session on making illustrated Wikipedia pages. 

The interactive events are intended to get the public involved in art and conversations about the environment, curator Radhika Subramaniam said in a statement. 

“We see the galleries as spaces with which to think, rather than as venues for display,” she said. “'Art, Environment, Action!' is about catalyzing a culture of conversation, creative experience and action. It is co-created by participants and artists.”

Trade School New York — the educational project in which participants can barter classes in butter-making, for example, in exchange for music lessons or sewing tips — will make an extended appearance at "Art, Environment, Action!"

Trade School will be at Parsons from Friday until Oct. 28 on Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays from 6 to 9 p.m., as well as Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 6 p.m. 

Artists who will get in on the fun include dancers Jennifer Monson and Kate Cahill, who will lead a dance tour through the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge on Nov. 10 from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

"Participants will create simple movement, listening and compositional exercises that continually shift our point of view as we experience the refuge," a description on Parsons' website explains.

Dancer Jill Sigman will create and perform site-specific pieces on The New School campus Nov. 28 to Dec. 15, building a structure out of discarded plastic bottles to raise questions about waste, sustainability and home, according to Parson's website. 

All events, unless otherwise noted, will take place at 2 W. 13th St. Some workshops require registration. The full calendar is available on Parsons' website. 

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