NEW YORK, NY.-
The New York City Department of Parks & Recreation, The Broadway Mall Association
, Marlborough Gallery, and the New York City Department of Transportation are pleased to announce a public exhibition of monumental sculptures by Spanish artist Manolo Valdés from May 20, 2010 through January 23, 2011. The exhibition will include sixteen bronze sculptures along Broadway from Columbus Circle to 166th Street. Each sculpture will include signage that displays mobile phone access numbers for an English and Spanish language audio tour with informative descriptions of the works.
Manolo Valdés is one of the most important and respected Spanish artists working today. Best known for his passion for past masters from Zurbarán to Velázquez, Matisse to Lichtenstein, Valdés uses their work as a pretext (como pretexto) to create an entirely new aesthetic object. For example, six massive sculptures entitled Reina Mariana, each over eight feet in height and weighing over two thousand pounds, depict Queen Mariana as immortalized by Velázquez. Four of these sculptures with their abstract and simplified forms will grace the famous city landmark, Columbus Circle, as well as two at the south entrance to the 72nd Street subway station. Also sited at the subway station is Odalisca, 2006, a sculpture whose subtle forms refer to works of Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso. Another highlight of the exhibition is the series of six monumental bronzes all over 12 feet in height depicting female heads, their calm facial composure and structured equilibrium offset rhythmically by dynamic ornamental head-pieces. The exhibition will also include the New York debut of Valdés two equestrian sculptures Dama a caballo I, 2008 and Caballero I, 2008, which were inspired by Velázquezs seventeenth-century portraits.
Valdés has enjoyed recent public exhibitions in such diverse cities as Beijing, Miami, Monaco and St. Petersburg. In New York, Valdés sculpture La Dama was exhibited on Park Avenue in 2002 and in 2007 six of the sculptors works were prominently exhibited in Bryant Park. His work is included in over 40 public collections including the Guggenheim Collection, Venice; Menil Foundation, Houston; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Musée National dArt Moderne-Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Museo Nacional Centre de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; and The Museum of Modern Art, New York.
The Broadway Mall Association was founded in 1987 and works in partnership with community residents, other not-for-profit organizations and New York Citys Department of Parks & Recreation to beautify and maintain the almost 10 acres of parkland which make up the center median malls of Broadway from 70th to 168th Streets. The diverse neighborhoods of the Upper West Side, Morningside Heights, West Harlem, and Washington Heights have benefited from their maintenance and beautification and The Broadway Mall Association is especially pleased to be exhibiting a Spanish artist since it reflects the diverse cultural fabric of New York and its distinction of so many Spanish-speaking neighborhoods. This exhibition marks the first time that a bilingual audio tour will accompany a Broadway Mall Association installation.
The New York City Department of Parks & Recreations 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.