. . . And a concrete Open House.
Public art abounds in New York City, including one dramatic landmark that would not exist without the vision of a renowned Upper Valley artist. The statue of General William Tecumseh Sherman by Cornish NH sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens stands guard just across from the 59th Street entrance to Central Park (featured photo, above.)
Another view of Saint-Gaudens' William Tecumseh Sherman. At the moment, it is surrounded by a sea of white tulips.
Across the street on Doris C. Freedman Plaza is the art installation of Boston-born Liz Glynn entitled Open House. Glynn "references one of the grandest Fifth Avenue interiors designed by Gilded Age architect Stanford White: the now-demolished William C. Whitney Ballroom," located just 8 blocks away. Glynn cast the fancy upholstered furniture of the wealthy in concrete and moved the "ballroom" to the "democratic public space" of Central Park, one of the nation's first urban parks.
Two of the many chairs in Open House, available for sitting. There is also a sofa or two.
You can climb on Open House, have your lunch, people watch, or just sit a spell. It's public art that loves the public. And the public is loving it right back. Two cousins, Stan Fineman (left) of Washington D.C. and Fred Stemmer (right) of NYC, took a moment to sample the seating. Stan's hat reads "No Trump."
The literary arts are not forgotten. There's an outpost of the famous Strand Bookstore on the corner just outside of Central Park at 60th St. and Fifth Avenue.
A snippet of quasi-public literary wisdom is available without even leaving The Lexington Hotel. Check out the quote from Oscar Wilde on the room key (below)
(My thanks to Stan Fineman and Fred Stemmer, above, for the conversation and permission to take and use their photos in this article.)
Susan B. Apel, writer, ArtfulEdge