It’s my pleasure to bring Julia Vallera’s project, the Color Wheelz, to Long Island City this weekend. I first met Julia about 4 months back and pitched her the idea, because I saw it as something to help me understand LIC and what this neighborhood means to its inhabitants – which I’m curious to know what they think! We’ll be parked at the Thomas Murray Playground, which I feel is a quintessential NYC park and playground: very urban (basketball and handball courts), very lively (its always occupied), ideally located (just blocks from PS1 and near all the major Western Queens subways, its sandwiched between two main roads, 21st and 11th Streets).


Color Wheelz is designed to transform a 1997 Ford van into a traveling, participatory installation. This van travels through the five boroughs of NYC filled with playful activities, which facilitate exploration into how color relates to community . Visitors at each destination adapt the inside and outside of the van using an array of color related items. These items include glowing neon wire, cling paper, velcro shapes, magnets and fabric. Visitors may turn on neon wire, cut shapes out of cling paper, apply velcro to the seats and walls and/or choose from an assortment of colorful fabrics to cover the interior. They consider the color of objects that surround them, such as buildings, people, clothes, food and nature. These observations inspire color patterns and designs that represent the current environment. Visitors of all ages are welcome and encouraged to create things they never thought they would or never thought they could. Every visitor’s unique color story is archived and supplimented with their personal audio recording or a written record. Meet us at one of our locations to participate in this funfilled exploration and be sure let us know how you think color relates to culture, communication and perception.