4th Annual Morningside Lights: New York Nocturne


SEPTEMBER 27, 2015


DESIGN, CONCEPT, DIRECTION:   Alex Kahn and Sophia Michahelles

MUSIC:   The Sugartones

ARTISTIC and TECHNICAL SUPPORT:   Sean Mair,  Taylor Riccio, Brenna St. George Jones

PRESENTER: Columbia University's Arts Initiative and Miller Theatre. Director, Melissa Smey


As Morningside Lights marked its fourth year bringing light of every shape and wavelength to Morningside Park, we asked our growing ensemble of makers: What image defines New York at night?

Is it the utilitarian fluorescence of the all-night taco truck, or the polychrome exuberance of Manhattan’s Art Deco spires? The bustling nightlife of club-goers and hipsters, or rustling wildlife of raccoons, luna moths, bats, coyotes and other wanderers of the urban undergrowth.  Is it the subterranean rumble of the Uptown 3 Train, or the airborn echo of a distant amateur saxophone? A glowing marquee or a backlit steam vent? Is it the enveloping anonymity of a darkened street, or the brazen exhibitionism of a lit apartment window? Is it Edward Hopper’s nighthawk diner or Edward Steichen’s steamy Flatiron? Is it Andy Warhol’s glitter or Mies Van Der Rohe’s glass?

PAW returned as visiting artists to Columbia University’s Miller Theatre to lead a week of free lantern-building workshops that drew over 200 makers, culminating in 50 unique illuminated forms and over a hundred smaller elements. Working from the theme of New York Nocturne participants drew from a deep well of crowd-sourced images to create a multi-faceted portrait of New York at night. Each lantern required a full week to construct, so as participants came and went each piece evolved from a cumulative process of blind collaboration.


Visit Official MSL Website: morningside-lights.com

View past Morningside Lights:

• 2012:   The Imagined City
• 2013:   The Luminous Deep
• 2014:   Odysseus on the A Train: Romare Beardon