While the vitality and stimulation of the urban environment can be pleasant, those living in or visiting densely populated areas, such as New York, can have wildly different experiences.

The ever-present cacophony of traffic, construction, and commerce; the struggle for mental and physical space; and the anxious need for constant communication in person or via technology are relentless assaults on the senses.

For the second edition of Stillspotting nyc, composer Arvo Pärt and architecture firm Snøhetta collaborate on a tour of Lower Manhattan that explores the special relationship between space and silence. 

Stillspotting nyc, a two-year multi-disciplinary project that combines urban experiences, public education programs, and means of escape, takes the Guggenheim’s architecture and urban studies programming into New York’s five boroughs.

Every few months “stillspots” are identified, created, or transformed by architects, artists, designers, composers, and philosophers into public tours, events, and installations. The first edition of stillspotting nycSanatorium, was created by Pedro Reyes in Brooklyn.

The Guggenheim Museum is collaborating with two academic institutions. Students from Columbia University’s Spatial Information Design Lab at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation are creating a working blueprint of the specific stillspotting areas around the city that pinpoints stress flow, population density, agitation, noise, and calm.

Students in the MFA program in the Photography, Video, and Related Media Department at the School of Visual Arts are creating video studies of the visual, aural, and sociological ecology of the urban landscape.

Stillspotting nyc: manhattan is on from 8 to 11 and 15 to 18 September 2011 at the Guggenheim Museum, New York, US.