Iron Men Invade New York

Antony Gormley's Event Horizon. (all photos: James Ewing, courtesy Sean Kelly Gallery)

Starting today, New York’s Flatiron District will host British artist Antony Gormley’s Event Horizon, a temporary installation of 31 life-size human figures.  The nude figures, modeled after the artist, will be situated at ground level, on rooftops, and even as high as 57 stories.  The installation, sponsored by the Madison Square Park Conservancy’s Mad. Sq. Art., is the group’s first project to extend beyond the boundaries of Madison Square Park.

“It’s really about New York City,” says Debbie Landau, President of the Madison Square Park Conservancy.  “Some of the locations were selected because they’re landmarks and other because they’re beautiful architecture, but they’re all places that people are going to want to stop and look.”

Some of Gormley's figures will be on the ground but most will be placed on top of Flatiron District landmarks.

Four of the figures will be on the ground but most will be on rooftops, situated as close to the edge of buildings as possible.  More prominent locations include icons like the Flatiron Building, the New York Life Building, and the Empire State Building.  The figures are designed to inspire viewers to pause and consider the skyline and the city as it surrounds them.

Event Horizon is an adaptation of a Gormley project of the same name installed in London in 2007. The figures were placed in a similar fashion in the project’s earlier incarnation on building rooftops and other provocative locations. The 31 figures used for the New York installation are the same figures employed previously in London. While the formal opening date for the exhibition is today, many of the figures have been installed and on view since last week.  A map and accompanying list of locations can be found on the project’s website.

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