Public art installations seem to be on attack, not just at Lincoln Center, but also, throughout the rest of New York City. The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) has, for a long time, acted as a steward of Isamu Noguchi’s sculpture and other artwork. However, across the street from MoMA, at 666 Fifth Avenue, a twin pair of sculptural Noguchi lobby installations are scheduled to be removed for an interior renovation. The pieces, titled a landscape of clouds, was designed to evoke cloud-like forms across the ceiling above a mock city grid across the floor. It is site-specific and provides the building with a unique character. The renovation and threat to Noguchi’s work at 666 Fifth Avenue is similar to the case of Richard Lippold’s Orpheus and Apollo sculpture, a New York State Preservation League (NYSPL) Seven to Save project in conjunction with Landmark West! Originally designed for Philharmonic Hall at Lincoln Center, with a new interior renovation scheduled for the building, Orpheus and Apollo has been removed for “restoration.” However, the fate of this sculpture, like that of Noguchi’s installation, is uncertain. The belief that contemporary renovations cannot live in harmony with mid-century modern art installations is ridiculous. These timeless masterpieces deserve the decency to remain in context.
Find out more about Isamu Noguchi’s piece, HERE!