MIDTOWN — A 37-foot-tall toy rocking horse head made of live flowers has taken root at Rockefeller Plaza.
The towering, whimsical Jeff Koons sculpture, called "Split-Rocker," depicts two toy dinosaur rocker heads merged into one and built from 50,000 flowering plants, according to a statement from the Public Art Fund.
“I love the dialogue with nature in creating a piece that needs so much control — How many plants should be planted? How will these plants survive? — while at the same time giving up the control,” Koons said in a statement. “It’s in nature’s hands, even though you try to plan everything to make the plants survive.
“This sense of giving up control is very beautiful. The balance between control and giving up control reminds us of the polarity of existence,” Koons continued.
The exhibit took six weeks to build, and will be maintained daily to make sure the blooms make it through the end of the exhibit on Sept. 12, said Dawn Reinholtz, the director of events at Rockefeller Center.
The sculpture is made of tightly packed soil and consists of 27 different types of blooms, including petunias, fuchsias, geraniums and tuberous begonias, according to Reinholtz.
“The two irregular profiles joined together offer a continuously shifting perspective as we move around the sculpture, which continues to change as its plants flower and grow according to their own cycle of life,” said Nicholas Baume, Public Art Fund director and chief curator, in a statement.
Passersby were awed by the vertical garden.
“I think it’s magnificent — it’s tremendous,” said 40-year-old Beth Cauwe, a visitor who had stopped to take a picture of the sculpture. “It really makes a statement, and Rockefeller Center just seems like the perfect place to put it.”
“Split-Rocker” will be shown at Rockefeller Plaza at 49th Street from June 25 through Sept. 12.