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Bivouac is an urban camping experience for small groups of participants in six artist-built lean-tos installed on the roof of a building.

Bivouac's host, artist Thomas Stevenson, acts as camp counselor/park ranger, leading campers in cooking a communal dinner.

Campers bring a sleeping bag and food to share, leaving their electronics behind to experience "sleeping out" in the urban wilderness.

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Need to Knows

it is camping aka roughing it, in new york city, on a roof

here is what i think you need to know. if i haven't covered a topic or you have a specific question, email me thank you and look forward to seeing you!

shelter

there are 7 tents. they're fun and awesome to sleep in. the first set were built in the summer of 2011 in brooklyn. they're big…for a tent. most people can fully stand up in the front end. they are canvas and the flooring is 1-inch wool felt. the canvas is waterproof and the felt feels like sleeping on packed sand.

each tent fits and sleeps 2 adults very comfortably with room for a 3 if you want to be extra cozy.

what's provided

new friends (lots them), a view, a canteen with:a kitchen area, a large reclaimed wood communal table, library and morning coffee.

Yes a real toilet too.

what's not available

internet, fire, electricity, a shower (you can live one day without those, can't you?)

what to bring

 I ask each camper to bring at least one food item to be used in the communal dinner: a protein, a starch, vegetables (in a reasonable quantity) we can discus via email. be creative and share. 

sleeping bag, blankets, pillows. whatever is comfortable for you to sleep in and on.

safety

you are on a roof 50 feet in the air. be very mindful of the edge. i really don't want anyone getting hurt.

neighbors

similar to the other great outdoors, this wilderness has an assortment of opinionated neighbors (new yorkers). please be respectful and try to blend in with your surroundings.  

questions

if there is something I haven't covered, just ask

send an email 

Location

Always Changing

 

Hours

open: 6pm–9am 
(night time)

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SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

general timings/ hours of operation for this scant 15 hour excursion

6pm till 7pm

Campers arrive
(choose a tent get aquatinted with the location/ meet each other)

8pm till 11pm (ish)

Diner time
(preparation/ conversation/ cleanup)

11pm and 8am

Sleeping

8am till 9am

Breakfast
(coffee/ tea/ yogurt/ granola/ fruit) 

9am (ish)

Campers pack-up their gear
exit the roof and
depart back into the world

9am till 6pm

site is closed 

questions send an email 

Press + Conversations

John Leland, “Sleepover in a Rooftop Camp.”
New York Times, August 23, 2013 

Andrew Burton, “Rooftop camping in New York City.” 
USA Today, June 17 2013

Anna Sanders, “Urban camping: Brooklyn artist shows how to get away” 
London Daily Mail, June 16 2013

Sydney Brownstone, “Artist Invites You to Go Rooftop Camping” 
Village Voice, June 11 2013

Elaina Plott, “Under the Stars and Above the Streets: Artist Organizes Rooftop Campground” 
New York Observer, June 11 2013

Sam Katz, "Gallery Glass Episode 15"
YouTube, September 15, 2013

Jen Chung,  "Artist Sets Up Secret Rooftop Camping In Brooklyn"
Gothamistt, Jun 16, 2013, 

Hana R. Alberts,  "Artist Runs Rooftop Camp-Outs, This Weekend And Beyond"
Curbed,  Wednesday, June 12, 2013, 

Dylan Schenke, "Go Camping On NYC’s Rooftops"
PSFK,  October 26, 2011. 

Thomas Stevenson: "Bivouac New York"
Designboom, 
October 25, 2011,

Lisa Eppich "This Collection Includes A Complete Portable Home"
Refinery 29,  October 26, 2011

Bivouac NYC – USA
Future Concepts Lab, August, 2013

 

 

 

The early August dates will be announced shortly. Add your name to the list below to stay in touch.

 
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About the Artist

Thomas Stevenson is an artist living in Brooklyn. He makes sculptural objects that focused on hospitality and the momentary interactions that happen when people occupy the same space. The sculptures act as surrogates- igniters for interpersonal interaction.

His projects have been deployed in urban streets and rooftops, in the Mojave desert, and at the New Museum's Ideas City Festival and Art Basel Miami, Beijing, Belarus, and Wales. His projects have been written about in the New York Times, the Village Voice, USA Today, and the New York Observer.

Thomas has an MFA from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, and a BA in Philosophy from Boston University. He recently completed the Art & Law program in New York City.

view THOMAS'S PORTFOLIO

 

 

Downloadable Plans

so you want to build your own tent. Here's a pdf the gives a general parts list and illustrations as to how the Bivouac Tents are made. The process is very straight forward. 

Frame Plans

download them here
 

Cover Plans

download them here

questions send an email