Year founded: 2011
Organiser: The New Museum


IDEAS CITY is a biennial Festival in New York City that includes conferences, workshops, an innovative StreetFest around the Bowery, and more than one hundred independent projects and public events that are forums for exchanging ideas, proposing solutions, and accelerating creativity.

IDEAS CITY explores the future of cities around the globe with the belief that art and culture are essential to the vitality of today’s metropolis, making it a better place to live, work, and play. Founded by the New Museum in 2011, IDEAS CITY is a major collaborative initiative between hundreds of arts, education, and community organizations that consists of two distinct components: The biennial IDEAS CITY Festival in New York City, and IDEAS CITY Global Conferences in key urban centers around the world.Conference

The Conference is dedicated to the exploration of Untapped Capital. It will focus on four areas where Untapped Capital can be found and put to productive use: Ad Hoc Strategies, Waste, Play, and Youth. Each topic will be discussed, questioned, and analyzed by a moderated panel of experts and innovators. The Conference commences with a keynote address by Joi Ito and culminates with a VSP (very special panel) to be announced on


IDEAS CITY Workshops, organized by the New Museum and partner organizations, invite the public and select practitioners to engage in discussions and hands-on learning. This ranges from rethinking unused spaces in the city and considering how artists could provide vital consultation for commercial development, to building bicycle generators.


Artists, architects, poets, technologists, historians, community activists, entrepreneurs, and ecologists share their ideas of Untapped Capital and invite participants to actively shape their city. This innovative, minimal-waste event takes place around the Bowery and in Sara D. Roosevelt Park.


Tapping the energy and talent of the downtown community, hundreds of cultural, educational, and civic organizations present site-specific, collaborative and interactive projects, exhibitions, and performances that investigate new forms and concepts to engage the public. Many activities take place in public space.