Client: Art Students League of New York
Location: New York, NY, United States
Completion date: 2023
Artwork budget: $25,000
Art Students League of New York
New York City Parks Department
Portrait of t. is a life-sized bronze sculpture created using 3D scanning and 3D printing. It was commissioned by the Art Students League of New York, together with the New York City Parks Department, and will be installed in Riverside Park North in Summer 2023.
All my artworks begin with a 3D laser scan of a person. This scanner was never designed to capture the human body in motion–when confronted with a moving form, the machine receives conflicting spatial coordinates and generates incomplete images – a 3D motion blur. I use this damaged data to create 3D printed sculptures, prints, video and VR/AR artworks. My fragmented forms draw inspiration from funeral and memorial sculpture, and can read as faux-historical forgeries and/or contemporary relics.
This sculpture is a portrait of tiger west, a musician and artist. It is drawn from my larger series of sculptural portraits which depict people who have undergone life-altering physical transformations. I found models largely via social media, and the people who came forward all had unique stories. I asked each subject to choose their own pose, so that they could perform and embody their own story. In each portrait, however technologically mediated, I sought to honor each person’s experience and their essential humanity.
Works in Public is the League’s exclusive public sculpture program in partnership with the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. The application process occurs in September each year.Works in Public (formerly known as Model to Monument) is a professional development program that offers artists the opportunity to create site-specific, large-scale public sculptures. The program was founded in 2010 in partnership with the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. Since its inception, 46 artists have completed this program and had their sculptures installed in year-long public exhibitions at Riverside Park South and Riverside Park at 145th Street. Beginning in 2022, the program has been re-conceived under the new leadership of Haksul Lee and Natsuki Takauji, alumni and former consultants of the program, and instructors at The League.
In 2023, two new public sculptures will be installed - one of them being Portrait of t. by Sophie Kahn.
This work will be 3D printed and cast in upstate New York. Welding and finishing will take place in New York and the work will be installed in the park in July/August 2023, with an unveiling in September.