Gaines’s sculpture “Roots,” encompassing seven sweetgum trees that were once native to the region, engages with the nation’s history of colonization and enslavement.
“A Fountain for Survivors” is a protective, pink cocoon in New York City’s busiest district.
This Wednesday, Mel Chin takes over Times Square as part of his multi-location, interactive art exhibit that includes an animatronic sculpture and a mixed-reality experience.
Max Neuhaus’s “Times Square” sound installation is meant to be stumbled upon by visitors to the chaotic crossroads in Manhattan.
A giant, beautifully hand-carved, wooden prayer wheel has appeared in the heart of Times Square, courtesy of Brooklyn-based artist duo FAILE.
In the glare of the afternoon sun and the LED screens of Times Square, an unassuming woman with thick glasses and a rolling wave of gray hair stood on a soapbox and spoke, as another woman held a white dove over her shoulder.
New Yorkers often complain that Times Square feels sterile and dead. The London-based artist Rebecca Louise Law’s new installation, “Flowers 2015: Outside In,” suspended in the lobby of the Viacom building, reintroduces nature and life to the neighborhood’s largely artificial environment.
In an attempt to show the faces of the New Yorkers and tourists who swiftly move through Times Square at an unrelenting 24-hour pace, French street artist JR has set up a photo booth right in its center. Inside Out New York City, which started last night as part of the Times Square Arts public arts program, is a continuation of JR’s Inside Out Project, where the faces of the people who live in a place are made visible on its structure.
The second floor of the Room Mate Grace Hotel last Wednesday night was humid. A crush of guests lined up around the hotel’s small pool and perched on bleachers staring down on it, hypnotized not just by the summer atmosphere but by the surface of the water. The pool didn’t look so much like a pool as a floating vat of primordial mist. Dancing on the upper layer of mist, circles of light bubbled up like so many blown smoke rings. The surreal vision was an artwork, called “Materialization/De-Materialization,” installed by Marco Brambilla for After Hours, a monthly series of events hosted by Clocktower gallery and Times Square Arts of which Hyperallergic is the exclusive media sponsor.
“You’re all too young and too clean-cut to remember, but I was a star in the golden age of Times Square sleaze,” snears burlesque superstar Tigger-James Ferguson, playing a washed-up Times Square prostitute in my favorite of his performances. That piece kept popping up in my mind while visiting Scott Ewalt’s exhibition Back in the Night: Psychotronic Landscapes, Objects & Souvenirs at Participant Inc.
On Valentine’s Eve (is that a thing?), Tracey Emin will watch her video piece “I Promise to Love You,” along with the thousands of people that constantly circulate Times Square, as its neon pledges of love scrawl in wavering neon over 15 of Times Square’s giant screens.
Times Square is one of the things New Yorkers love to hate. It has come to be one of the most defining aspects of our great city but it repeals its inhabitants with the reputation of being a kitsch-filled tourist magnet with little to offer other than discount deals on Broadway shows and garish billboards that scream “BUY STUFF!” But what most people don’t think when they ponder Times Square is art, but Sherry Dobbin is working to change that.