Images: Audrey Melton, Bob Krasner
Let Us Keep You Warm is an interactive sculpture that utilizes sustainable building practices and recycled materials to generate and emulate heat. The concept and the design originally stem from Sean Desiree’s experience with NYC winters huddling with friends as a way to survive waiting for the bus. As a teenager they utilized drop-in centers, such as Hedrick Martin and The Door, where they saw first hand the disproportionate rate in which LGBTQ adolescents were affected by homelessness. Though this piece is for all that enter, its existence is specifically directed toward supporting New Yorkers who need outdoor warmth the most; those without homes and those who are more vulnerable to the elements, such as people with underlying health conditions.
Let Us Keep You Warm is a public art piece rooted in the principles of social practice and specifically addresses a need: free heat.
Let Us Keep You Warm is in opposition to the Hostile Architecture that is implemented throughout the city to deter loitering. They are coining the term Conducive Architecture and invoking it to mean designs that address a need that aids people rather than designs that purposely restrict the behavior of the poor, people without homes and youth. The purpose of this public piece falls in line with the core of their practice; to produce life-size structures and sculptures that serve as sanctuaries, protectors, and symbols of empowerment for BIPOC LGBTQ folks.
Video by: KMDeco Creative Solutions: Mark DiConzo. Video created with support from Bloomberg Philanthropies. Courtesy Socrates Sculpture Park, 2022.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Sean Desiree is a self-taught artist, born and raised in the Bronx. Utilizing the craft of woodworking, Sean Desiree produces life-size structures and sculptures that serve as sanctuaries, protectors, and symbols of empowerment for BIPOC. They have been awarded residencies at More Art and Wave Hill in New York City. They are a 2021-2022 Leslie Lohman Fellow and have a forthcoming 2022 Mass MOCA residency. Through their residency at More Art they received funding to produce their debut socially engaged public art sculpture, entitled BEAM ENSEMBLE with the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.