The Memories of Manhattan series continues with an in-person panel discussion with Yukie Ohta, Aaron Shkuda, and Hanne Tierney about SoHo on Wednesday, May 15 at 6 pm EDT.

The Renee & Chaim Gross Foundation / 526 LaGuardia Place New York, NY 10012

This program focuses on SoHo and its drastic changes over the past 50 years. SoHo built a worldwide reputation because of its artists, who settled illegally in the neighborhood in the 1960s and ‘70s, converting the abandoned industrial buildings into personal residences and art studios that we now know as lofts. Gradually, the artistic flair and spacious storefronts of SoHo would grab the attention of designer brands and gallery owners, transforming it from a gritty, bohemian neighborhood into one of New York’s wealthiest neighborhoods.

Panelists consisting of local SoHo residents and artists, and a scholar on SoHo’s gentrification, will discuss SoHo in collective memory, thinking about why it became such a famous and beloved neighborhood. They will also consider SoHo’s gentrification, and the impact of these changes on the neighborhood.

Register here

Yukie Ohta is an artist, archivist, and writer. She is the founder of SoHo Memory Project, a nonprofit organization that celebrates and preserves the history of artists’ SoHo.

Aaron Shkuda runs the Princeton-Mellon Initiative in Architecture, Urbanism, and the Humanities. He received his PhD from the University of Chicago and is the author of The Lofts of Soho: Gentrification, Art, and Industry in New York, 1950–1980, published in 2016. He previously held positions at Carnegie Mellon and Stanford Universities.

Hanne Tierney is the founder and director of Five Myles, an exhibition and performance space in Brooklyn. She has performed her work at the Guggenheim Museum, the Whitney Museum, BAM, Lincoln Center, HERE, the Public Theater and at several Jim Henson International Festivals, and has performed in museums and festivals throughout Europe.

Yana Lysenko is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Comparative Literature and Russian & Slavic Studies at New York University. Her dissertation focuses on the concept of urban identity in twentieth and twenty-first century Ukrainian literature, cinema and media. She is the 2023-24 NYU Public Humanities Initiative Pre-Doctoral Fellow at the Renee & Chaim Gross Foundation.

Memories of Manhattan is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.

Image: Chaim Gross carving the plaster for Caring in his Grand Street studio, 1978. Photo by Waintrob-Budd. From the archives of the Renee & Chaim Gross Foundation.