March 28  ●  April 15  ●  May 18  ●  June 22

This spring, party with LMCC and celebrate 50 years of building creative communities.

Celebrate with us as we mark LMCC’s 50th anniversary as Manhattan’s Arts Council and our legacy of fostering vibrant creative communities! You're invited to Party as Performance, a series of special gatherings at The Arts Center at Governors Island, taking place in March, May, and June! Tickets are free and open to all with RSVP.

Each event is hosted by LMCC alumni artists and offers a unique atmosphere, energy, and community, all delving into themes of Practice, Process, and Participation. We kick off the series on March 28 with Party as Process, a listening and dance party with YiuYiu 瑶瑶 of Chinatown Records. Then, on May 18, immerse yourself in Party as Practice with host Yackez (Larissa & Jon Velez-Jackson) during our Arts Center Residency Open Studios. Finally, join us for Party as Participation in June, hosted by Elisabeth Smolarz, as we mark the conclusion of the 2024 River To River Festival and our Extended Life residency program.

Upcoming Party as Performance Events


Party as Practice

Hosted by Yackez (Larissa & John Velez-Jackson)

Saturday, May 18, 1-3pm at The Arts Center at Governors Island

Is sitting together a party? Is dancing? Is hot tub? Is drum circle? Talking? Imbibing while vibing? Can party transform itself? Can we rest together? Yackez is throwing a party. They’ll coax a party into being. A matinee party. A laugh out loud party. A party with beverages. Swaying in the corners party. Come join them on the island known as Paggank by the Lenape. 


Party as Participation

Hosted by Elisabeth Smolarz

Saturday, June 22, 11am-1pm at The Arts Center at Governors Island

Elisabeth Smolarz will craft ice cream flavors inspired by her experiences during her 2012 artist residency on Governors Island. 

These flavors will celebrate the friendships and artist communities she formed during that time, as well as the distinctive features of the island itself, such as the weeping willow tree, the lavender fields, and the beloved Governors Island sheep: Flour, Sam, Evening, Chad, and Philip Aries. 

The tasting event will offer a culinary journey blending elements of childhood nostalgia, art, and nature.

Party as Performance Past Events

Party as Performance

The Downtown Dinner

Monday, April 15, 6pm at the Conrad New York Downtown

Join us in celebrating LMCC's Golden Anniversary as Manhattan's Arts Council! LMCC’s annual gala, The Downtown Dinner supports LMCC's efforts to serve, connect, and make space for artists and community in Manhattan and beyond. 

The Downtown Dinner returns at The Conrad Hotel on April 15, 2024, honoring Bill T. Jones with the Liberty Award for Artistic Leadership, Miguel Gutierrez with the Sam Miller Award for Performing Arts, and Baseera Khan with the Michael Richards Award for Visual Art.

Together we'll toast to 50 years of leadership in artist services and 50 more to come! Stay tuned for ticket sales, program announcements, and further details.


YiuYiu practice - Chinatown Block Party_Credit Cindy Trinh

Party as Process

Hosted by YiuYiu 瑶瑶 of Chinatown Records

Thursday, March 28, 6-8pm at The Arts Center at Governors Island

Pulling from the ever-growing archive of her Chinatown Records 華埠錄音 family history project, YiuYiu 瑶瑶 lovingly invites us into her living room dancefloor with a selection of favorite Chinese albums inherited from family and neighbors. 

With music dating from the present day and all the way back to the 1920s, YiuYiu 瑶瑶 sets the stage for a time-traveling deep dive into vast vinyl collections that have soundtracked Chinatown living rooms, dancefloors, and countless beloved memories with our loved ones.

Party as Performance Artists


YiuYiu 瑶瑶

YiuYiu 瑶瑶 (aka Rochelle Hoi-Yiu Kwan) is a cultural organizer, artist, and oral history educator based on Lenape land in NYC's Manhattan Chinatown. She takes on her childhood name YiuYiu 瑶瑶 as a researcher and DJ for Chinatown Records 華埠錄音, a community effort to celebrate the richness of music, memory, and history that comes with inherited family collections.


Larissa & Jon Velez-Jackson

Formed in 2010, Yackez is the World’s Most Lovable Art-Pop duo of married couple Jon & Larissa Velez-Jackson. Jon is a songwriter, writer, and musician. Larissa is a choreographer, interdisciplinary artist, movement educator and a Foundation for Contemporary Art’s grant awardee in 2016 and 2022.

The picture shows Elisabeth Smolarz sitting on a stool with their legs crossed. Two cats are on the floor next to Elisabeth.

Elisabeth Smolarz

Elisabet Smolarz is a conceptual artist and curator living and working in Queens. She utilizes photography and video to demonstrate how consciousness and perception are formed as a result of larger social structures. Smolarz is founder/director of Spectral Lines. Spectral Lines is an artist-run salon in Ridgewood, NY. Additionally, Smolarz operates a small ice cream window at the same location, adding a delicious dimension to the community she fosters.


The Arts Center is accessible by ferries to Governors Island departing to and from Lower Manhattan. For complete ferry schedules and directions to ferry terminals, visit the Governors Island website. All ferries are wheelchair-accessible. The Arts Center is wheelchair accessible, further accessibility, health & safety information can be found hereFor any question or further information about accessibility needs, please contact Hilarie Spangler at

50 Years of LMCC

This year LMCC celebrates its Golden Anniversary with you, our circle of artists, supporters, and friends! It all started in 1973, when Flory Barnett, a lover and benefactor of the arts, saw how the Financial District could benefit from cultural activity, and realized local artists could bring energy and imagination to that district. With the help of David Rockefeller Sr., Chase Bank, and NYSCA, the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council was born.

Since then LMCC has supported thousands of NYC-based and international artists with resources, studios, professional development, and most importantly, spaces for creative communities that continue to grow. Show your support for LMCC today!