Press Releases

Tuesday, September 21, 2004
No. 86


The New York City Department of Parks & Recreation, The Broadway Mall Association and Marlborough Gallery today cut the ribbon on Tom Otterness on Broadway, an exhibition of 25 sculptures by New York City sculptor Tom Otterness. The event took place in Richard Tucker Park on 66th Street and Broadway, where Otterness’ sculpture, Trial Scene, is located for the duration of the show. In attendance were Deputy Mayor Patricia E. Harris, Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe, Broadway Malls Association President Bob Herrmann, Marlborough Gallery President Pierre Levai, and Sculptor Tom Otterness.

Tom Otterness on Broadway stretches from Columbus Circle to Washington Heights along Broadway, between 60th and 168th Streets, and will be on view through November 22, 2004. Spanning over five miles, the exhibition represents the first large display of temporary public art on the Broadway Malls.

"New York City has a proud history of presenting temporary and permanent public art in all five boroughs," said Deputy Mayor Patricia E. Harris. "Today we couldn’t be more excited to celebrate Brooklyn’s own, Tom Otterness. We are thrilled to welcome his work to the Broadway Malls and continue the great tradition of public art in our City through this groundbreaking installation."

"This is a landmark public art show for New York City," said Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe. "The Broadway Malls are playing host to the largest exhibition in Broadway history. Tom Otterness’ show is a wonderful way to inaugurate what we hope will be a long line of important exhibitions along the malls."

Considered one of the premier public artists working in the United States, Tom Otterness has exhibited widely and completed commissions in this country and abroad. His stylized bronze figures combine into sculptural ensembles that explore the range of human experience, from grand ambition to common foibles, plucking imagery and themes from popular culture and subtly

transforming them into humorous commentary. "I’m most excited that the show will cut through so many social and cultural layers of New York City," said Otterness. Otterness’ art has been exhibited in communities around the globe. In addition to work in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art and The Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, public commissions include installations at the United

States Courthouses in Minneapolis and Sacramento. In New York City, he has installations at the Carl Sagan Discovery Center at Montefiore Children’s Hospital in the Bronx; mounted on piers in the East River; at the Little Red School at the corner of 6th Avenue and Houston; at Metrotech; at P.S.234 in Manhattan; in Nelson Rockefeller State Park in Battery Park City; in the A/C/E/L subway station at 14th Street; and at the entrance to the Hilton Times Square Hotel. He is currently completing a major public commission for Museum Beelden aan Zee in The Netherlands. Otterness, a New York resident since the 1970s, works from a studio in DUMBO, Brooklyn.

"The moment I first saw Tom Otterness’ work, I envisioned the sculptures up and down Broadway enhancing the landscaped malls and New York City," said Robert F. Herrmann, president of The Broadway Mall Association. The Broadway Mall Association was founded to beautify and maintain the malls of Broadway and to restore the public glory of New York City’s oldest and most traveled thoroughfare, from Columbus Circle through Harlem to Washington Heights.

This show includes Marriage of Real Estate and Money, as well as more recent works that draw characters from fairy tale and myth. Reflecting the artist’s use of scale to establish complex relationships between his sculpture and their surroundings, the work featured in Tom Otterness on Broadway ranges in size from Boy and Dog, which measures a mere 20 inches tall, to Escaping Leg, standing over 20 feet tall.

"Marlborough Gallery is proud to support this exciting and unprecedented public exhibition of Tom Otterness’ work on Broadway—a great show for all New Yorkers to enjoy," said President of Marlborough Gallery Pierre Levai.

Parks & Recreation’s 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. Committed to the exhibition of art by emerging and established artists, Parks & Recreation has supported projects ranging from international exhibitions in flagship parks to local, community works in neighborhood parks and traffic islands.

Recent revitalization of the Broadway Malls has been made possible through the support of the Lincoln Square BID, Columbia University, Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, The Broadway Mall Association, the Borough President and City Council, and volunteer organizations such as the Jewish Community Center and the L.D. Brandeis High School/Evergreen House. Fabrication, installation, maintenance and removal of the artwork for this show have been paid for by Marlborough Gallery and Tom Otterness Studio.

View an interactive map of the exhibit

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