About the Project
Projects at the Chamber was inspired by the dramatic environment of the Chamber of Commerce’s Great Hall, which is decorated with portraits of the great financiers from American history, all of them white. Some artists treated the portraits as their audience, such as puppeteer Theodora Skipitares, whose puppets enacted an original script about 19th and 20th-century inventors and their relationship to capitalism.
In Past Events, Ida Applebroog’s piece, the feminist artist placed a small bronze sculpture of a woman in the midst of the portraits and inserted a speech bubble into her lips that warned: “Gentlemen, America is in Trouble,” to which the portraits replied: “Isn’t Capitalism Working?” or “It’s a Jewish Plot.” Bob Carroll, meanwhile, presented comic narrative work, including material about famous guests at the Chamber and native inhabitants of the Hudson Valley. Other performers included Aigars Kildiss, James Corbett, and musician Olu Dara, who performed regional music.
Space for the project was provided by the New York Chamber of Commerce.