Times Square's Midnight Secret

May 3rd, 2016 |

Times Square is one of the most visited sites in the world, receiving on average 300,000 pedestrians every day, there to take in the gigantic, high-wattage billboards and marquees. Yet with all of this foot traffic, there's a secret that not many people, not even seasoned locals, know about. From exactly 11:57 p.m. until midnight, the screens simultaneously change from the images, products, and brands they show all day. The advertisements stop for three minutes in a coordinated effort to create, promote and infuse the night with art, in a monthly presentation called "Midnight Moment". The Times Square Advertising Coalition, Times Square Arts, and participating artists, join efforts to display cutting-edge creative content on the world-famous screens. On the program for May is Botanic, a brief film by artist Jennifer Steinkamp that features colorful flowers and plants floating in a cubic space. The flowers are blown around by an unseen force, causing them to bounce off the frame and crash into each other. The animation loops forward and backward as the flowers break apart into leaves, stems and petals and come back together again, a digital garden continuously disappearing and re-appearing. Previous projects have included a showing of the film The Odyssey, the immersive, documentary story telling of Antony Nagelmann's journey across the Atlantic Ocean in a 1929 wooden sailboat, during the winter of 2013-2014. The program premiered four years ago, and continues to delight tourists and locals alike, every night, with nearly 360 degrees of digital art. While you're traveling in the city, don't forget to stop by one night to catch the show just before midnight, before heading back to your home away from home in our Times Square hotel.

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