By Frederick Charles/ Courtesy of the David Rockefeller Creative Arts Center
Take a peek inside Tarrytown’s new David Rockefeller Creative Arts Center, which brings multiple art spaces to the community.
Visitors to the historic John D. Rockefeller estate will find a new venue there to both create and experience art this winter. Housed among the 217 acres of the estate’s Pocantico Center, the David Rockefeller Creative Arts Center opened in October, bringing with it a sleek gallery, performance space, flexible artist’s studio, and gathering area.
According to its executive director, Judy Clark, the center — also called the DR Center — is aimed at expanding a wealth of different facets of arts and culture in the region. “The mission of the DR Center is to be a sustainable and inclusive arts hub for the creative process where artists and the community come together to develop, present, and experience new works of performing, literary, and visual arts — and all events are free or low-cost,” says Clark. Tickets are available through the fund’s website, rbf.org/events.
As for the center itself, Clark explains that it is a “four-season multipurpose flexible space designed for emerging and mid-career artists to create new work, and community arts organizations to host workshops and other events,” she says. “It includes a performance and rehearsal space with a sprung floor and telescopic, retractable seating for approximately 200 people, as well as pivot doors that open to a terrace for outdoor performances.” The center additionally holds an exhibition gallery, a visual arts studio, and a gathering space for receptions.
Housed in what was once an orangery, the “net-zero” center was converted into a well-appointed arts nexus by the architectural firm FXCollaborative. “We chose them for their sustainable design expertise and experience with cultural arts related and adaptive reuse projects,” says Clark.
Visitors to the DR Center will find the forward-thinking debut exhibit, Inspired Encounters, which features women artists from Kykuit’s permanent collection, as well as a December performance by the acclaimed dance company A.I.M. by Kyle Abraham.
The future looks bright for the DR Center. “Our plans include the expansion of our programming, artistic residencies, and community engagement,” says Clark, “and we are hoping to continue to uplift marginalized voices in the arts and provide outlets for the public to engage with a range of artists and disciplines as well as to expand our reach to local, underserved schools.”