Walker Hotel Greenwich Village Addresses Post-Pandemic Healing With Touch

An immediate reaction to the waning of the pandemic is to raise the armor and walk away cautiously. Of course, disarming is foolhardy, but social isolation is likewise damaging. In the spirit of human connection and artistic responsibility, Walker Hotel Greenwich Village will be the host to renowned contemporary artist, Brendan Fernandes in the staging of his first piece back in the city entitled “Together We Are,” which sheds light on the AIDS pandemic, helping those who have been impacted by the disease. 

The hotel, including its lobby, full-service restaurant Society Cafe, and surrounding street will serve as the performance space for the dance troupe. Hotel guests and the general public will be encouraged to watch and engage with the performance, with proceeds benefiting HIV+ artists through the non-profit Visual AIDS, the only contemporary arts organization fully committed to HIV/AIDS awareness through its visual art projects. Fernandes states, “Walker Hotels is giving us a home to perform again as we come out of this pandemic and helping us get back to what we love doing most.” 

Fernandes is no stranger to New York City having lived there for over 10 years. Likewise, he is no stranger to artistic visibility having been shown at the Whitney Biennial, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Museum of Modern Art. His project addresses one of the tragic by-products of the pandemic: the hardship to the creative community of whom 66% lost their jobs. Many theaters and galleries are just now approaching the reopening process. 

Through the medium of dance, Brendan’s telling of “Together We Are” will bring together artists who have long been separated from dance and human connection, many of which have ties to iconic New York City dance institutions like the American Ballet Theatre and the Joffrey Ballet in Chicago.

Atit Jariwala, the CEO of Bridgeton Holdings [Walker Tribeca, Walker Greenwich Village, Marram Montauk] has been pushing for New York City’s rebound through experiential programming, including culturally centered activations across both Walker Hotel Greenwich Village and Walker Hotel Tribeca. Recent programs include: a screening room pop-up at the Tribeca location centered around the return of the iconic Tribeca Film Festival and “A Mile in their Shoes” program which offered guests bike tours of New York City through the lens of integral bike messengers.

“There are specific moments in history that fundamentally shift the way we view the world, and the pandemic has proven that experiences are what matter most to people which is especially crucial in hospitality,” says Jariwala. “Walker Hotel Tribeca is located on the iconic gallery row that is Walker Street and we continue to look for ways to support the arts community and help artists in any way that we can.”

An open-to-the-public, rehearsal performance of “Together We Are,” will take place on August 6, and will culminate with a final performance to coincide with World HIV/AIDS Awareness and Aging Day on September 18th.


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