Tag: public art

The Alamo Turns 50!

On November 1, 1967, an 8′ x 8′ x 8′ 1,800-pound giant black cube was installed in Astor Place as one of 25 temporary public artworks by the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs. However, it was so popular that local residents petitioned the City …

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Now That’s a Beautiful Wall!

On Monday morning, I was walking up the subway stairs at Union Square thinking, “what am I going to write about for Off the Grid this week?”  As I came around the corner, lo and behold the idea presented itself.  I …

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Downtown Underground: Tom Otterness’ Life Underground

In 1985 the MTA founded what was then called Arts for Transit and Urban Design (now called Arts & Design) as part of an ambitious capital improvement program meant to reverse years of subway system decline. At that time, MTA …

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Art in Odd Places 2015: RECALL

Today marks the 11th year and anniversary of the Art in Odd Places (AiOP) festival.  AiOP is a visual and performing arts festival that strives to present works outside the confines of traditional public space and stretch the boundaries of …

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Downtown Underground: A Look at Subway Art

New York City is known as one of the art capitals of the world. Art is all around us – from the Museum Mile on the Upper East Side to the galleries of Chelsea and beyond. We are often told …

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October 17, 1967 – “Sylvette” gets the go-ahead

On October 17, 1967, Pablo Picasso wrote in a letter that he agreed to allow his colleague, Norwegian artist Carl Nesjar, to reproduce a large-scale sculpture of “Bust of Sylvette” for the University Village/Silver Towers complex, which GVSHP later proposed …

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Alamo (the Cube) in Astor Place

My Favorite Things: Alamo (the Cube)

It’s fall, 1967. A one-ton steel cube is dropped by the Lindsay administration into the middle of a grimy traffic island in an increasingly dodgy part of town. Instantly scuffed and plagued by graffiti, the hulking, monochromatic form could have …

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