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The Whitney unveils its design for an incredible new installation on the Hudson waterfront

Howard Halle

With the plug finally pulled on the on-again, off-again undulating park at Pier 55, the next big thing for the Hudson waterfront is starting to shape up thanks to the Whitney Museum. Last month, it announced plans to erect an art installation at Pier 52 to be designed by renowned artist, David Hammons. Now, they’ve released renderings of the project, titled Day’s End.

Photograph: Courtesy Guy Nordenson and Associates

The piece is essentially an open structure following the exact outline and dimensions of the vast shed that once covered the pier before it was torn down. Hammons’s work is not just an homage to a long-vanished landmark: It pays tribute as well to another site-specific work that utilized the same shed more 40 years ago.

Photograph: Courtesy Guy Nordenson and Associates

Also titled Day’s End, it was the creation of the legendary Gordon Matta-Clark, an artist known for using the decrepit landscape of ’70s New York as his material. For his version of Day’s End, Matta-Clark cut a huge, roughly semi-circular opening in the wall of the building overlooking the water, likening his effort to a great rosette window in a cathedral. While Matta-Clark’s piece disappeared along with the shed, Hammons’s installation—which is now undergoing review by the city—is meant to be permanent.


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