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Artsy Block Party Bringing Pom-Pom Making and Sculpture to Long Island City

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | August 27, 2012 3:13pm

LONG ISLAND CITY — It's a block party for the arty set.

The SculptureCenter will be shutting down Purves Street in two weeks so that artists and amateurs alike can channel their inner Jeff Koons — collaborating on a giant sculpture, learning pom-pom making and having their faces painted in the cubist style.

During the first LIC Block Party on Saturday, Sept. 8, Purves Street, where SculptureCenter is located, will be transformed into an art stage where participants and artists from Free Style Art will construct the large-scale temporary sculpture.

The piece will imitate the massive residential towers that keep popping up around Long Island City and be made of broken records and record sleeves donated by Materials for The Arts, said John Cloud Kaiser from Free Style Art.

Local restaurants including Manducatis Rustica, the Burger Garage, Alobar, Sage General Store and LIC Market will serve food and a local ice cream parlor Malu, known for its LIC themed ice cream flavors will launch its new “SculptureCenter” flavor.

There will be a stage with live music and interactive performances during the block party, which is also sponsored by the Purves Street Block Association.

And the all female mariachi group Mariachi Flor de Toloache will perform, along with The Kate Bush Dance Troupe and Queens Jazz Overground.

Artists will also be teaching pom-pom making and carnival games and participants can get their faces painted in the Cubist style by artist Stephanie Dodes.

At the Artist Market, locals will have an opportunity to buy a selection of functional art and objects, including sculpture, works on paper, clothing, artisanal soaps, books, records, jewelry and tableware.

"We want to give back in some way," said Frederick Janka, associate director at SculptureCenter. "We want to show our support to the local community and local businesses and tell our neighbors how important they are."

More than 200 people have already declared on the party's Facebook page that they are going to participate.

“As the residential population of the Queens Plaza and Court Square area continues to grow, we’re looking forward to participating in this exciting community event bringing people from all corners of LIC together," said Erin Piscopink of LIC Partnership, a neighborhood advocacy group and the event partner.