Womxn in Windows

Multi-disciplinary artist KESH brings a visual fantasia to the screens of Times Square every night in August with eye-land, imagining a verdant world within the hyper-digital center of the city.

In eye-land, butterflies travel through a lush natural landscape in which KESH herself appears, enveloped in a colorful aura. As she recedes and reappears, the viewer is beckoned through flowers, rivers, and trees, periodically encountering a rotating chrome eye — a new adaptation of a symbol that has appeared across much of the artist’s practice.

In this work themed around metamorphosis and co-existence, KESH aims to unite the future and the past of New York City, inspired by the notion that our contemporary surroundings of concrete and manmade technologies were built by drawing on the natural resources of the earth. The buildings and billboards of Times Square become an embodiment of both modernity and the historic environment that lies beneath; by taking us on a journey into a fantastical past, KESH proposes new expressions of our future. The title itself is a twist on the word “island,” a nod to the island of Manhattan, in all of its evolutions.

“As I walk through the streets of Manhattan, I feel my feet journey across the concrete. I see buildings sprouting up like trees and often wonder — what lies beneath? What do we suppress as we grow?”

KESH performed a live curated DJ set in Times Square on August 25 from 11pm until 12am, with the end of this set accompanying the eye-land visuals as they are displayed on 90+ billboards from 11:57pm to 12am.

eye-land is presented in collaboration with Womxn in Windows.

Midnight Moment is the world’s largest, longest-running digital art exhibition, synchronized on over 90 electronic billboards throughout Times Square nightly from 11:57pm to midnight. This year, Times Square Arts is celebrating the ten year anniversary of the Midnight Moment series with a roster of all women artists until April 2023.

KESH is a British multi-disciplinary artist whose work stretches boundaries between visual art, music and design. Her vision transcends the confines of a singular narrative. In an eclectic celebration of her gifts, KESH, masterfully blends creative technology and experimental sonic art with the more traditional methods of photography, film, sculpture and illustration to produce large-scale digital works, campaigns and installations that are immersive and unmistakably KESH. Her artworks have been sold at historical institutions such as Christie’s Auction House and The Museum of the African Diaspora. KESH’s work has been featured in publications such as Vogue, The Economist, Channel 4 News, Elle, i-D, and the New York Times.

Womxn in Windows is a platform for the perspectives of womxn on culture, identity and society. What started as an annual public exhibition of womxn-made art films in storefront windows is now on a mission to support intergenerational and cross-cultural dialogue. WxW has been regarded by the LA Times as ‘a video art show made for this moment’ and by LA Weekly as ‘an installation that challenges conventions of female representation’. Through the years WxW has shown the works of digital artists and filmmakers such as Ja’tovia Gary, Kilo Kish, Alima Lee, Christine Yuan, Yumna Al Arashi & Arshia Fatima Haq among many others. WxW was founded in 2019 by Zehra Ahmed.

eye-land credits:

Executive Producer & Artist
Damien Blase
Associate Producer
Armin Joseph (A.J.) Molaee
VFX Supervisor
Damien Blase
Artistic Curator
Zehra Ahmed
Damien Blase
Director of Photography
Colin Shepard
Music Supervisor
Hair & Makeup
Jaime Diaz
Lighting Technician
Nicolas George Carle
Production Designers
Justin Barco
Xaivia Inniss

Midnight Moment is made possible by the Times Square Advertising Coalition, ABC SuperSign, American Eagle, Branded Cities, Clear Channel, Disney Store, Express, Levi's, LG, Luxottica Group S.p.A., Morgan Stanley, Microsoft, New Tradition, Sensory Interactive, Sephora, Sherwood Equities, Show + Tell, Silvercast, Swatch, T-Mobile, and JCDecaux.

Major support of Times Square Arts is provided by Morgan Stanley. Additional program support is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts; the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature; and public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Additional support for Midnight Moment is provided by Meta Open Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Times Square Advertising Coalition.

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Photos by Michael Hull.