A Dome for Regular Volks: PS1, VW Will Erect Dome in the Rockaways

The PS1 Dome. (Courtesy Elk Studios)

The PS1 Dome. (Courtesy Elk Studios)

Yesterday morning, MoMA PS1 announced that it has partnered with Volkswagen to provide the Sandy-damaged Rockaways with some of the gestalt-iest philanthropy we’ve seen in some time. 

Volkswagen will pay to install a geodesic dome, similar to the one found in the PS1 courtyard in Long Island City, out in the Rockaways. The dome will come with some $140,000 raised by VW and PS1 for the Rockaways at a benefit party in Miami during the Basel fair, and it will cost about the same to install, bringing the total donation to $280,000.

In a telephone interview with Gallerist, PS1 director Klaus Biesenbach described the new structure as a “relief and culture dome” to complement the museum’s “performance dome.”

“It was just a consequence of saying there needs to be a space at the shoreline,” he said, “that, first of all, is a relief center, because it’s very, very needed, but, second of all, is beautiful and will be cheering people up with culture.”

Mr. Biesenbach, who owns a house in the Rockaways and has been leading weekly post-Sandy cleanup excursions to the Brooklyn coastline, said that the dome will also provide a space for community leaders to meet and plan rebuilding efforts, as all the nearby shops and restaurants have been shuttered since the hurricane. The exact location for the Rockaways dome has not been decided, but once the permits have been obtained from the city, Mr. Biesenbach expects construction to begin—most likely in January. The Rockaways’ dome will be about the size of the one at PS1, if not larger, and plans call for a small park to surround it.