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1,200-Pound Sculptures Coming to Broadway Malls

By Nicole Levy | May 11, 2017 8:38am
"Recliner with Head in Hands" will go on display at Mitchel Square Park, at the intersection of 168th Street and Broadway.
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Broadway Mall Association

UPPER WEST SIDE — At 1,200 pounds and 10 feet in length, her arrival would be virtually impossible to miss — if it weren't happening under the cloak of darkness.

"Recliner with Head in Hands" is one of nine bronze sculptures by artist Joy Brown touching down in the green malls along Broadway between 72nd Street to 168th St. Monday night, according to the Broadway Mall Association, the park beautification and maintenance nonprofit organizing the installation.

The larger-than-life abstract nudes, which were cast in Shanghai, are being brought to the city via flatbed truck to be hoisted mechanically into place starting around 10 p.m. at 72nd Street, Broadway Mall Association board member Deborah Foord said. Brown herself will be there to supervise.

"It’s quite a production," said Foord, who is chairwoman of the organization's public art committee. "It’s exciting to see."

The exhibition will mark the first time the sculptures are displayed in the U.S., according to the Connecticut-based Morrison Gallery, which helped organize the show.

Brown's work, which draws inspiration from her childhood in Japan and apprenticeship in traditional Japanese ceramics, "convey[s] the heavy gravity of stone," the gallery said.

"The expressions and gestures transcend that weight, suggesting warmth and lightness of being. Simplicity of the forms and the earth-toned patina evoke a feeling of stillness and peace."

Community Board 7 parks and environment committee member Ken Coughlin had a simpler assessment at a CB7 meeting earlier this month: “They’re very large and they’re very cute," he said.

The show officially opens May 17 in celebration of BMA's 30th anniversary and continues through November 2017.

Check out BMA's map plotting out where you'll find each sculpture:

Joy brown