Location: New York, NY, United States
Completion date: 2010
Artwork budget: $70,000
Andres Escobar & Associates
Installed in the lobby of the Times Square Building, formerly home of the New York Times newspaper, SEVEN, an innovative public art project conceived by artist Elinor Milchan, is a multi-screen video installation that celebrates light and the seven colors of the visible spectrum. Because a mind alive is forever voyaging through thoughts and feelings, the piece reflects the continuous effect and passage of light on our lives.
When approached by interior architect Andres Escobar about collaborating on a public art project inside one of Manhattan’s most historical and prestigious locations, I thought of a project that would illustrate the building’s rich history in modern, visual terms. I wanted to create a work that meshes seamlessly with Escobar’s redesign of this historical Manhattan real estate. I thought of the people who would be in the building; about how they notice and might react to the color variations of light during the day. Like a gaze through an open window, SEVEN is an abstract composition into the ever-changing tones of nature and the different wavelengths our vision can perceive. Throughout the day, visitors to and workers in the buildings would be able to experience time through the changing moods and movement, and the subtle changes of tones revealing it's gradual development.
Escobar had seen my work in someone's office he had designed. He fell in love with work and told me one day we would collaborate together. Months later, his firm was approached to give proposal for the lobby of the Times square building. We spoke in length while he was designing it, and he was looking for a video work integrated in his design. I went on site searching for clues so that the work itself was in direct response to what the site and its history had to tell me. And its the feeling of time passing that prevailed. In the end, it was about finding the creative to give the experience to the passerby. We designed the screens and their positioning together.
The project did not get the attention it deserved because the economical crisis hit the city and lasted for quiet a while.