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Union Square Park

The Daily Plant : Tuesday, March 6, 2007

The Hare In Union Square


Photo by Clare Weiss

Parks & Recreation is pleased to announce the exhibition of Barry Flanagan’s Large Left Handed Drummer in Union Square Park. The 16’ x 9½’ x 8’ bronze sculpture is characteristic of Flanagan’s work and depicts a dancing hare playing a drum. The work will be on display from February 18 – June 24, 2007 and coincides with an exhibition of his sculptures at Chelsea’s Paul Kasmin Gallery (February 24 – March 31, 2007).

“Barry Flanagan’s whimsical rabbit embodies the essence of our public art program,” said Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe. “As with all of his animal sculptures, Mr. Flanagan’s work offers a sense of joy and playfulness to passersby. Everyone should hop on over to Union Square to enjoy the hare and visit parks throughout the City to take in our world-famous collection of permanent and temporary outdoor art.”

Flanagan, an internationally renowned British sculptor, is best known for his expressive bronze hares modeled in varying poses of dynamic energy. The series of hares, which he began in 1980, are often engaged in human activities such as playing musical instruments or sports, dancing and interacting with technology. They are often rendered in a monumental scale, as is the Large Left Handed Drummer, with its long wiry limbs and ears that capture a playful and jubilant spirit.

Flanagan has been the subject of major retrospectives, most recently, at the Irish Museum of Modern Art and the Dublin City Gallery. He has exhibited in numerous solo, group, and public exhibitions worldwide. His bronze hares have been exhibited in many outdoor venues, most notably on O’Connell Street in Dublin, on Park Avenue in New York, and at Grant Park in Chicago.

The project is located in Union Square Park’s southeast traffic island and is supported by Parks & Recreation and the Union Square Partnership. Parks’ temporary public art program has consistently fostered the creation and installation of temporary public art in parks throughout the five boroughs. Since 1967, collaborations with arts organizations and artists have produced hundreds of public art projects in City parks.

QUOTATION FOR THE DAY

“Dexterously the Drummer was right handed,
there are examples in bronze from that mould
in other locations.

The left handedness of this Drummer
speaks to the other side of the brain,
from the past to the future;
another tune in composure.

Broadway!!
A seed of hope after the conviction.
I would subtitle this piece
‘I don’t want to set the world on fire.’”

Barry Flanagan

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