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Wow. If you are in New York, you must go see Heard NY. Artist Nick Cave, along with CreativeTime and Alvin Ailey have put together the most wonderful and whimsical experiential presentation at Grand Central Terminal’s Vanderbilt Hall. The clip above gives just a glimmer of what the project is about, but the reality of watching it in the flesh is so much more exciting. From the anticipation that bubbles up from the crowd that gathers in the hour leading up to the show, to the first notes of live harp and drums, to the transformation of these static pieces of sculpture into living moving creatures, each with their own personalities - it is a magical experience.
In a word: dreamy.
As part of a series of events celebrating the centennial of Grand Central Terminal, Heard•NY inhabited Vanderbilt Hall for a week.
Nick Cave, the Chicago artist best known for his “Soundsuits” has handcrafted wearable sculptures in the form of horses. The 30 horses are all slightly different and have colourful coats that resemble African ceremonial costumes.
The head of each horse is elaborately decorated in a style reminiscent of traditional Incan costumes from South America.
For most of the exhibit the horses sit peacefully on sawhorses. But, twice a day the sculptures come to life!
Accompanied by live music - harps and drums - the sculptures are transformed by pairs of dancers from The Ailey School.
Once the dancers don the sculptures the music begins. Pastoral harp music accompanies the natural movements of grazing horses. But once the percussionists get started and the music becomes more lively, the two dancers in the suit separate and dance about energetically.
Following this post are two videos that really must be viewed in order to fully appreciate this work of art.