Tag Archive | Garden

Rasta Banana

Rasta Banana
All Photos By Gail

I saw this deadlock-sporting Rasta Banana hanging merrily in this tree in a Community Garden on Avenue C. I like his hat.

Rasta Banana

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Let’s Go: Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden at MOMA!

MOMA Sculpture Garden
All Photos By Gail

Summer doesn’t last forever, especially in NYC, so why not plan to enjoy the nice weather while we have it by spending as much time outside in beautiful places as possible? Just do it! There are lots of really grand indoor water features such as fountains and wall waterfalls with lights and sounds to amuse the children.

Moma Sculpture Garden Fountain

Maybe you are already a huge fan of Art, but weren’t aware that the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) has a gorgeous, landscaped sculpture garden that provides a relaxing oasis in the center of Manhattan. It’s only open when the weather is nice, so you need to go now.

Skyscraper Vertical View
This is Your Vertical View While Seated Near the Fountain Pictured Directly Above

The Sculpture Garden is named for Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, an American socialite and philanthropist who was the wife of financier and philanthropist John D. Rockefeller Jr. Mrs. Rockefeller was known for being the driving force behind MOMA’s creation. It is nice that they named the sculpture garden for her.

IMG_2274
The Garden Has a Few Bubbling Fountains Like This One

There is lots of seating and shady areas, and they even have a bar where you can buy a coffee or a drink. Here is some of the art that you can see in the garden right now.

Alexander Calder Sandys Butterfly

This sculpture by Alexander Calder is called Sandy’s Butterfly, and it has a mobile feature at the top. Calder, who went by the nickname Sandy, was most famous for his mobiles.

Alexander Calder Sandys Butterfly

Anthony Caro Midday

This one is called Midday and is by British sculptor Anthony Caro, who passed away in 2013.

Anthony Caro Midday

As you can imagine, children are very attracted to these brightly colored objects, although climbing on the art is not allowed — both for the safety of the children and the preservation of the art.

Ellsworth Kelly Green Blue
Green Blue

Ellsworth Kelly’s work is associated with hard-edge painting, Color Field painting, and Minimalism, and he was one of the most famous American artists of all time when he passed away on December 27, 2015 at the age of 92. I love his work.

Signage

 

Modern Art Monday Presents: Figurengruppe (Group of Figures) By Katharina Fritsch

Group of Figures
All Photos By Gail

From Moma Dot Org:

A brilliant yellow Madonna, a set of skeleton feet, a grey giant leaning obdurately on his club, a green and boyish-looking St. Michael slaying the dragon, a pitch-black snake — these and other figures make up a curious cast of characters currently on view in MoMA’s Sculpture Garden. Figurengruppe (Group of Figures) is a tightly arranged ensemble of nine sculptures by the German contemporary artist Katharina Fritsch, first conceived in 2006–08 in painted polyester and recast in 2010–11 in durable lacquered copper and bronze for outdoor display.

Group of Figures

Katharina Fritsch is an artist best known for fastidiously crafted figures, animals, and everyday objects placed in unexpected arrangements and juxtapositions, uncovering new, sometimes unsettling meanings about our past and present histories. Often painted in striking colors, her work invariably commands attention — and MoMA’s Figurengruppe does not fall short of that. The figures’ polished, silky surfaces, beaming colors, and choreographed arrangement are spellbinding and puzzling, their mute stance and inscrutable veneer tempting us to search for some larger narrative.

There are hints and clues about what inspired certain characters, but ultimately any fixed meaning remains stubbornly elusive. The artist has explained, for example, that the Madonna is based on cheap souvenir figurines sold near church pilgrimage sites in Germany and France, albeit without the lemony dress. Religious symbolism is present, but the dazzling color unhinges the worshipped item from a prescribed context, de-familiarizing her into an object that can bear other potential storylines or associations. (Fritsch also produced the Madonna as a small-scale multiple, creating a more widely available, high-art doppelganger of the commercial souvenir.)

Group of Figures Rear

The skeleton feet go back to a childhood dream in which the artist, as a four-year-old, fled a burning house only to encounter a pair of skeleton feet. These in turn relate to a shoe-fitting practice offered in German shoe stores through the 1960s whereby an image of one’s foot bones would be created using an x-ray contraption. Anecdotal memory plays a part here, but seeing the rigorously crafted set of bones can just as easily bring to mind some disembodied creature out of Edward Gorey’s morbid tales or a commonly encountered object from an archeologist’s lab.

The female torso takes its cue from a 1926 Expressionist sculpture by a man named Ernst Conze that used to stand in the garden of Fritsch’s childhood home in Langenberg, Germany; now painted white and reduced in form, it has been lifted from its past into a present-day setting. In fact, mid-century German parks and public gardens have been a recurring theme in Fritsch’s practice, in some works even serving as visual backdrops. In a way this tactic is preserved in MoMA’s current display—the newly re-installed Sculpture Garden makes for a fitting tableau, situating Figurengruppe within a diverse congregation of cohorts that include Auguste Rodin’s St. John the Baptist Preaching (1878–80), Aristide Maillol’s contemplative female Mediterranean (1902–05), Max Ernst’s King Playing the Queen (1944), and Tom Otterness’s sleeping Head (1988–89), among others.

Taking a look at some of the artist’s source material can offer access points into the group’s oblique presence. What I find most captivating, though, is the friction between the sculptures’ smooth, almost generic look and the rich and quasi-narrative worlds that unfold beneath their surfaces. It’s a space where our intellect or attempt to rely on a logical framework loses its tight grip, conjuring instead images from the realms of history, memory, myths, and fairytales. These aren’t necessarily cheerful, but they do make us ask questions — maybe even reveal some of our own skeletons in the closet.

— Posted by Eleonore Hugendubel, Curatorial Assistant, Department of Painting of Sculpture

Group of Figures in the Snow

And this is what the Group looks like covered with snow! (Photographed 1/24/16, the day after Superstorm Jonas!)

Celebrate Earth Day, 2012!

Happy Earth Day Heart

Happy Earth Day,  Everyone! Here in New York City there are quite a few free events and programs going on around town in Central Park, Times Square, The Highline Park and the New York Botanical Gardens, to name just a few. Find out what’s going on in your neighborhood at NYC Earth Day Events.

For more tips and ideas on Green Living please visit The Daily Green Dot Com.

You can also read advice and get resources on how to start your own Garden on the official Google Blog at This Link.

We all share this planet so please do your part to save the Earth!

Springtime Flowers Yellow and Pink