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Cool pool is heading to Rockefeller Center this spring

Written by
Howard Halle

Rockefeller Center has been home to many unusual public art installations over the years, and now, thanks to the Public Art Fund, the Scandinavia art duo Elmgreen & Dragset will be adding another, joining the ranks of Jeff Koons’s Puppy and Louise Bourgeois’s Maman and Her Spiders. The piece in question is a swimming pool, but don’t expect to be taking a dip in it: It will be standing in an upright position on a pedestal several feet off the ground. The work takes its inspiration from the kidney-shape pools familiar on the West Coast, but it’s titled Van Gogh’s Ear, referring to the appendage famously cut-off by the eponymous artist in a fit of despair. Why, exactly, it’s being called that is a open question, but it certainly sounds catchy and the shape of the pool does recall an ear turned upside down. Offered complete with diving board, stainless steel ladder and underwater lights, Van Gogh’s Ear will provide a chill sight for spring from April 13 to June 3, after which it will be off to China. 

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