The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 Thursday, June 4, 2020


Five giant masks by Thomas Houseago installed at Rockefeller Center this spring
Thomas Houseago Masks (Pentagon), 2015 Tuf-Cal, hemp, iron rebar, steel, redwood, 18' .75" x 23' 1.125" x 24' 3.5" Courtesy of the artist and Gagosian Gallery Photo: Jason Wyche, Courtesy Public Art Fund, NY Organized by Public Art Fund and Tishman Speyer.



NEW YORK, NY.- For six weeks this spring, Thomas Houseago’s new commission Masks (Pentagon), featuring five large sculptural masks forming a pentagonal space that visitors may enter, is on view in Rockefeller Plaza. From within, the mask’s eyes create windows that frame views of the landscape and skyscrapers of Midtown Manhattan. Thomas Houseago: Masks (Pentagon) is free to the public and on view April 28 through June 12, 2015 at Rockefeller Center between 49th and 50th Streets. The exhibition is organized by Public Art Fund and Tishman Speyer.

Designed specifically for this plaza, Masks (Pentagon) consists of five masks ranging in height from about 14 ½ to 16 ½ feet, each of which reflects a different approach to the stylized representation of the human face, from clearly recognizable to highly abstracted. Standing vertically with their edges connected at key points, the monumental elements bring Houseago’s striking sculptural language into a dialogue with public space and architectural scale. As each colossal face looks out toward the surrounding cityscape, the spaces between them become “doorways” that give access to an interior “room.”

The five masks, which were cast from clay in industrial-strength synthetic plaster, stand on a stepped base made from massive beams of unfinished redwood. The back of each element of the sculpture reveals the artist’s method of construction – a grid-like armature of rebar inlaid with hemp and plaster. The resulting five-sided form evokes an archaic temple, the ritual function of which has been lost in time.

"Throughout its history, Rockefeller Center has been a destination for the public to experience incredible artwork and architecture firsthand," said Tishman Speyer Co-Chief Executive Officers Jerry Speyer and Rob Speyer. "We are thrilled to partner with the Public Art Fund to unveil Thomas Houseago's Masks (Pentagon), a project that was created specifically to be exhibited in the Plaza, where it will be enjoyed by both New Yorkers and visitors alike."

“In his most experimental and spatially immersive work to date, Thomas Houseago presents us with five indelible yet mysterious faces. They are recognizable only as belonging to the mythical realm of gods and monsters, reinvented for a contemporary moment obsessed with fantasies of both a primitive past and a dystopian future,” said Nicholas Baume, Public Art Fund Director & Chief Curator.

"In this piece I wanted to bring the activity and the feel of the studio into public space as an experience. The public gets to ‘see’ the work both from the outside as an image but then also from the inside as an insight into its construction. It becomes a kind of retreat from the city but also a porous viewing space. The public becomes part of the experience of looking and also an integral part of the work,” said Thomas Houseago.

Houseago creates monumental, often figurative sculptures that combine classical and modernist references and techniques. With a handmade sensibility, he utilizes materials from carved wood, clay, plaster, and bronze to steel rods, concrete, and burlap to create works that intentionally reveal traces of their making. In Masks (Pentagon), planar surfaces like the cheeks or forehead of a face adjoin articulated features like eyebrows or a nose, creating an interplay between flat and three-dimensional elements. The artist’s hand—as well as the footprints of his young daughter—is visible in many of the cast surfaces, while the roughhewn reverse of each face bears metal elements that form connections between the masks. Evoking a visceral response, these abstracted yet iconic faces convey both an elemental sense of power and an open vulnerability.

Since 1998, Public Art Fund and Tishman Speyer have collaborated to present internationally acclaimed works of art to the millions of people who visit and work at Rockefeller Center. Recent projects include Jeff Koons’ massive topiary sculpture Split-Rocker (2000) presented in 2014; Ugo Rondinone’s Human Nature (2013), nine 16-to 20-foot-tall, human-shaped stone figures; Chris Burden’s What My Dad Gave Me (2008), a 65-foot tall skyscraper made up entirely of construction parts; and Anish Kapoor’s Sky Mirror (2006), which received the award for “Best Show in a Public Space” by the U.S. Art Critics Association. In 2003, Takashi Murakami’s Reversed Double Helix featured his 30-foot-tall “Mr Pointy” sculpture, two giant floating balloons, and a forest of mushroom seating; in 2001, Louise Bourgeois presented three massive bronze spiders, including the 30-foot-tall Maman; and in 2000 Jeff Koons’ first monumental topiary, Puppy, blossomed at the foot of 30 Rockefeller Plaza.










Today's News

May 2, 2015

Mysteries of metalpoint technique revealed in first exhibition at National Gallery of Art

National Portrait Gallery in Canberra removes Widodo portrait after executions

A rare and important Marilyn Monroe dress to go under the hammer at Julien's Auctions

Comprehensive exhibition of Robert Motherwell's seminal Open series opens at Andrea Rosen Gallery

Jane Farver, former Director of the MIT List Visual Arts Center, passes away in Venice

The Phillips Collection announces exceptional gifts of photography to permanent collection

Dallas Museum of Art acquires collection of modern and contemporary jewelry

From Roentgen to Fabergé: A European private collection to be offered at Christie's London

Paris Photo Los Angeles 2015 opens with strong attendance and content at third U.S. edition

Five giant masks by Thomas Houseago installed at Rockefeller Center this spring

New Orleans Museum of Art Announces Katie Pfohl as Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art

Strong international turnout for Palm Beach's Modern's April 11 Mad Men Tribute Auction

Italy looks to Milan Expo for taste of recovery; More than 20 million people expected

Kate Tempest photograph is acquired by National Portrait Gallery

Gustavo Aceves opens exhibition at the Brandenburg Gate

New exhibition marks centenary of tragedy which shocked the world

Yorkshire Sculpture Park presents exhibition by Laura de Santillana and Alessandro Diaz de Santillana

National Museum of Women in the Arts exhibits works by innovative British designer Daisy Makeig-Jones

The Buchmann Gallery opens exhibition of works by British/American sculptor William Tucker

Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2014 opens at Sheffield's Millenium Gallery

Morris Museum hosts Smithsonian traveling exhibition exploring the history of Indian Americans

Grace Farms Foundation announces opening of its building The River by SANAA

Galerie Springer exhibits masterpieces by Arnold Odermatt on the artist's 90th birthday

New display celebrates Andrew Carnegie's inspiring gift to New York City: Its public libraries




Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 



Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org avemariasound.org juncodelavega.com facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful