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State museum opens Empire State Plaza at 50 exhibition
Rockefeller and Corning looking at Albany model. Photo: New York State Archives.

ALBANY, NY.- The New York State Museum has opened a new exhibition commemorating the 50th anniversary of the laying of the cornerstone for the Empire State Plaza that occurred on June 21,1965. The Empire State Plaza at 50 is organized in collaboration with the New York State Office of General Services and features dozens of images as well as artwork from the Empire State Plaza Art Collection.

Open through January 17, 2016, the exhibition also features a 1963 model of an “Albany of the Future”, which includes a model of the Empire State Plaza. In addition, two pieces from the Empire State Plaza Art Collection will be on exhibition: Four at Forty-Five by Alexander Calder and Studies for the Sun by Isamu Noguchi. A portrait of Nelson Rockefeller by Andy Warhol will also be on display.

“This June is the 50th anniversary of the laying of the cornerstone for the Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller Empire State Plaza,” said New York State Museum Director Mark Schaming. “In cooperation with the New York State Office of General Services, the State Museum is proud to open The Empire State Plaza at 50 exhibition. The State Museum and the Board of Regents are dedicated to educating Museum visitors about New York’s history. This exhibition explores the Empire State Plaza’s history and how Albany became the public space where New York State government, culture and community converge.”

Office of General Services Commissioner RoAnn Destito said, “The New York State Museum has done an exceptional job creating an exhibit that captures the construction of the Empire State Plaza including the stories of those who built it, explanations about how the complex works mechanically, the architectural influences that inspired its design, and the art collection that adorns it. I join Governor Cuomo in encouraging people to visit the museum to learn more about this project and many other interesting pieces of New York State History.”

A collection of video shorts that explore various features and workings of the Empire State Plaza will be screened Saturday, June 20 through Friday, June 26 (except for Monday June 22) at 12:30pm at the New York State Museum’s Huxley Theater. Screenings are free and open to the public.

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