Marisa Morán Jahn
Late Shift: Float
The Guggenheim
Thursday, March 21, 2024
6–8 pm EDT

The Guggenheim’s Innovation Lab presents an evening of interactive installations that explore the desire to float, fly, drift, and harness the air created by Marisa Morán Jahn (SMVisS ’07) along with students from Parsons/The New School.

In this newest Late Shift program, Jahn and her students will fill the Guggenheim’s iconic rotunda with special installations activating the museum’s architecture through playful aerial choreographies. During the program, visitors will have the opportunity to participate in a miniature kite-making workshop before they are invited to watch the kites take flight down the Guggenheim’s spiral ramp! Celebrate the creativity of New York City’s young designers during this unique, hands-on event.

From Marisa Morán Jahn:
You likely know the story of Daedalus who designed wings of wax and feathers so that he and his son Icarus could escape captivity. Daedalus escaped. But Icarus, delighted by the sensation of flight, flew too close to the sun. His wings melted and he fell to his death. The story is most often told as a warning to us of Icarus’ hubris and foolishness.

But I prefer to think of the father and son as two parts of the same coin that together allegorize the process of inspiration and invention. Beautiful and foolhardy at the same time, inventing — like making art — is a rapturous process driven by the exhilaration to defy limitations. Over and over, we engage in the never-ending quest to transcend our limits as landlubbers with airborne aspirations. 

About the event:
Developed in collaboration with Academic Engagement at the Guggenheim, the installations, workshop, and procession are the outcome of Kite City, a design and rapid prototyping course taught at Parsons in fall 2023 by Jahn and product designer Neva Kocic. Guest instructors include Rafi Segal, architect and professor at MIT, and Amy Rosenblum Martín, curator and faculty at Parsons/The New School. This interdisciplinary, collaborative R&D studio responded to the desires for flight and floating induced by the Guggenheim’s iconic architecture. Students explored the aerial engineering of wind, the intricacies of kite design, the conditions of flight, and their expressive possibilities for audience engagement.

About Marisa Morán Jahn:
Marisa Morán Jahn is an artist of Ecuadorian and Chinese descent whose work “exemplifies the possibilities of art as social practice” (Artforum) and explores “civic spaces and the radical art of play” (Chicago Tribune). Working across drawing, public art, and architectural scales, Jahn directly engages new immigrant families and low-wage workers—as well as millions more via the Tribeca Film Festival, United Nations, Barack Obama’s White House, and the Venice Biennale of Architecture. Jahn is a senior researcher at MIT (her alma mater); Director of Integrated Design at Parsons/The New School; and co-founder (with Rafi Segal) of Carehaus, the United States’ first care-based co-housing project. She is represented by Sapar Contemporary.