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October 28, 2009 1:24 PM

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On Target: NYC Art Battles

Two months ago, while all of Manhattan was in a frenzy over Fashion's Night Out, two artists at Intermix engaged in an art battle. While shoppers watched, the painters smothered mannequins in neon yellow, sky blue and gold lacquer....

Two months ago, while all of Manhattan was in a frenzy over Fashion's Night Out, two artists at Intermix engaged in an art battle. While shoppers watched, the painters smothered mannequins in neon yellow, sky blue and gold lacquer. While it helped stir up excitement for the night itself, the demonstration was also being taped for the Web series "RADAR: Art Battles," which starts its second season today.

The show follows up-and-coming artists in speedy three minute episodes. "I find projects that we can cover in short-form so that people can go check them out in person after watching the episode," says Alex Johnson, co-founder of RADAR's production company WBP Labs. "Our projects take into consideration audience behavior and interaction as a key element."

Each episode introduces a new Manhattan-based project that approaches art in an innovative and refreshing way. Selecting their subjects was no small feat for the producers-slash-curators, who've seen it all. "It's impossible to spend an evening in New York without hearing about an incredible project from a friend or a stranger or noting something from a billboard and looking into it later, or seeing a piece of street art," Johnson says. "We're inundated with choices and constant feeds of information so I feel like the role of curator is becoming more apparent in culture."

Other season highlights include stints with Manhattan street artist Aakash Nihalani and the four inhabitants of the Waterpod, a self-sustaining eco-habitat that has been floating in NYC waterways autonomously for six months.

Season Two of RADAR premieres October 28th and can be seen on Babelgum.com/RADAR or on the Babelgum mobile application (iPhones).
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