For Freehand New York, we partnered with Bard College to offer commissions to 15 Bard students and alumni/ae to create original artworks for the hotel’s public spaces and guest rooms. As a part of this collaboration, the commissioned artists created one-of-a-kind, hand-painted murals for each of the 394 guest rooms—each room unique from the next. Intricate sculptural and framed pieces are found throughout the guest rooms and public spaces as large-scale murals liven the walls leading to Broken Shaker, behind the Front Desk, and in the Gym. The entire development process has been documented with photography captured by one of Bard’s commissioned artists.
Freehand’s artistic community has only grown since opening. Continuing the partnership with Bard College, we have embarked on a unique collaboration to offer Freehand Fellowships for multi-disciplinary artists-in-residence at the hotel. This program is intended to foster and support artists in various disciplines, from diverse backgrounds, and at all stages of their career. A rare artistic undertaking, partly inspired by the building’s history as a haven for creatives, selected artists will be awarded a paid, year-long Fellowship and have the unique opportunity to live, work and exhibit at the hotel.
The Freehand Fellows are selected by our partner Bard College from a pool of alumni of the Bard MFA. Program and affiliated artists of the Fisher Center for the Performing Arts. Four Fellows will be selected per 12-month cycle.