New-York Historical Society Reopens with New Outdoor Exhibit

The New-York Historical Society is gearing up to welcome Upper West Siders and guests to its new outdoor exhibit on August 14, 2020. The new exhibition called Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine, will feature over 50 interviews and photographs taken by poet and journalist Kevin Powell and photographer Kay Hickman. Interview audio will be available in English and Spanish for guests to listen to through their phones.

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Last April, Powell and Hickman spent two days traveling around the five boroughs to interview New Yorkers who were impacted by the crisis. According to the website, the team aimed to show both the “tragedy and remarkable resilience at a moment in time during the pandemic.”

Hope Wanted NY Historical Society

Photo credit: Kay Hickman
Catherine “Cat” Carnes, a registered nurse from Oklahoma, came to Brooklyn to volunteer after seeing “the news day after day and watching the nurses literally cry out for help in New York City.”


Photo credit: Kay Hickman
A woman sits outside her Bronx apartment building to get some fresh air.

Hope Wanted Exhibit

Photo credit: Kay Hickman
In Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Hasidic Jewish men stand shoulder to shoulder in their foyer praying, while three girls watch from the outside.

Hope Wanted New York City Under Quarantine

Photo credit: Kay Hickman
A man sits outside to take a cigarette break in Staten Island.


Photo credit: Kay Hickman
A man and his son walking home from the grocery store in Harlem.

Hope Wanted will be set up in the museum’s rear courtyard. The open-air space will allow visitors to be in a socially distant environment as they read New Yorkers’ stories about the pandemic’s effect on the city. The courtyard will feature a quiet and conducive area, surrounded by plants, to inspire guests to reflect on their experiences. An open-sided story booth will be available for visitors to record their own stories, archived by the museum.

Admission is free with limited entry. Face coverings are required for entry. The museum will use timed entry and on-site safety measures to handle social distancing guidelines. To get tickets, the New-York Historical Society advises guests to book timed-entry tickets online in advance.

The museum will also have updated hours:

  • Thursdays (11am – 5pm) will only be open for visitors who are immunocompromised and aged 65 years and above
  • Fridays (11am – 8pm) will be open for the general public. The museum admission will be pay as you wish from 6pm – 8pm
  • Saturdays and Sundays (11 AM – 5 PM)

The New-York Historical Society plans to fully reopen to the public indoors on Friday, September 11. Hope Wanted will run from August 14–November 29, 2020. To book timed tickets, please visit this page.

The New-York Historical Society is located at 170 Central Park West, between 76th and 77th Streets.

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