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Artforum, 9/91

Empty Pedestals Project at Storefront for Art and Architecture


Some years ago, artist Marc Blane began documenting "predesignated art sites" in New York City, sites formerly occupied by heroic sculptures an ceremonial fountains commissioned during the turn-of-the-century City Beautiful Movement. Due to the vagaries of time and the wages of vandalism, these sites now stand empty. For this exhibition, Blane invited young artists and architects to design new works for several such spots, with the idea that their projects might replace the former Eurocentric, Beaux-Arts monuments with imagery capable of speaking to each area's current, predominantly non-European ethnic population. In the most effective of these projects, the physical and historical baggage of the site is reworked in ways that speak to the present and, with some luck, to the future as well.

Flag – 1984 – 19' x 16' x 16' – steel, bronze, granite – Seward Park, Manhattan