ZUS member of BMW Guggenheim Lab


Elma van Boxel and Kristian Koreman, principals of ZUS [Zones Urbaines Sensibles] are proud to announce they have been selected as team members for the BMW Guggenheim Lab New York. Conceived as an urban think tank and mobile laboratory, the BMW Guggenheim Lab will explore issues confronting contemporary cities and provide a public place and online forum for sharing ideas and practical solutions. The BMW Guggenheim Lab and all of its programming will be free to the public. The website bmwguggenheimlab.org and online communities will create and extend the opportunity to participate in this multidisciplinary urban experiment worldwide. Following the New York installation, the BMW Guggenheim Lab will first travel to Berlin in spring/summer 2012 and then to a city in Asia (later to be announced).


An international Advisory Committee has nominated the New York BMW Guggenheim Lab Team (BGL Team), an innovative group of emerging talents in their fields who will create the diverse range of programming that will be presented in New York. Van Boxel and Koreman are part of this multidisciplinary team comprised of: Omar Freilla, a Bronx, New York–based environmental justice activist, cooperative developer, and founder and coordinator of Green Worker Cooperatives; Canadian journalist and urban experimentalist Charles Montgomery, who investigates the link between urban design and happiness; and Nigerian microbiologist and inventor and 2010 TEDGlobal Fellow Olatunbosun Obayom.

BMW Guggenheim Lab a joint effort of the team and the public.
The BMW Guggenheim Lab is conceived to spark visitor curiosity and interaction, and audiences will be encouraged to participate and contribute to the answers, ideas, and stories generated inside. Programming will include unconventional tours exploring the urban fabric, hands-on experiments and how-to workshops, film screenings, and community-based discussions.

The BMW Guggenheim Lab has a physical platform. Atelier Bow-Wow designed a mobile structure, a compact temporary facility now situated in First Park, 33 East First Street New York. This Lab will be open Wednesdays and Thursdays, 1 to 9 pm, Fridays, 1 to 10 pm, and Saturdays and Sundays, 10 am to 10 pm.Here the public and the BGL Team have the opportunity to interact, discuss issues and explore new ideas.

Central theme Confronting Comfort; Van Boxel and Koreman will focus on issues of segregation and gentrification in the City of New York.
The theme for the first three-city cycle of the BMW Guggenheim Lab is Confronting Comfort, an exploration of how urban environments can be made more responsive to people’s needs, how a balance can be found between modern notions of individual versus collective comfort, and the urgent need for environmental and social responsibility. The BGL Team will design public programs, experiments, and an installation exploring how interventions and innovations that decentralize, decelerate, localize, and democratize New Yorkers can create a more adaptable and sustainable version of comfort. Each BGL Team member will also work closely with collaborators such as AgeLab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); Environmental Psychology, The Graduate Center, City University of New York (CUNY); Latin Lab, School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, Columbia University; Poiesis Fellowship, Institute for Public Knowledge, New York University; and THNK, the Amsterdam School of Creative Leadership. Van Boxel and Koreman will focus on issues of segregation and gentrification in the City of New York.