“Passing Glances” is an installation of over life-sized ceramic portraits placed along Stan Michels’ Promenade in Fort Tryon Park, Uptown Manhattan, NYC. The portraits are based on miniature clay portraits modeled quickly on the NYC subway and provide a snapshot of the diversity of the city.
Artist: Peter Bulow.
Opening: Sunday, March 11th, 2012.
Train: A to 191 St (take elevator to the park).
In 2010, Manhattan Times wrote, “Anyone who has ridden the subway in the past three years may have potentially been a subject of Peter Bulow’s sculptures. Bulow, sculpts people sitting on the subway.
It works like this: Bulow gets on the train and watches the other passengers, looking for someone he thinks is particularly beautiful or has an interesting expression, even those who are asleep. He takes out his bag of clay and begins sculpting.
In total, Bulow has made about 400 sculptures, usually focusing on the head from the neck up.
Bulow said he was nervous when he first began, afraid someone would punch him or say something confrontational.
“I don’t think anyone’s been offended,” said Bulow. “I’m a psychiatrist, so I’m interested in people’s inner world.”
Most of the time those who are awake eventually notice what he is doing, said Bulow.
The expressions that he preserves in clay might be more natural than what other sculptors depict because his studio – the subway – is public, yet also intimate. On the subway, people feel at liberty to talk to anybody in a way that they may not in other public places.
Bulow said he is interested in this moment in history, and how people present themselves in public. He compared his work to Roman portraits. In that time and place, there was a proper way for people to present themselves in public. Similarly, there is a certain way people today present themselves in public.”
“Passing Glances”, which was made possible with support from the NoMAA (Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance) Creative Grant Program made possible by the JP Morgan Chase Foundation and the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone Development Corporation. It will be on exhibit from March 1, 2012 through June 30th, 2012.
Peter was born in India, lived as a young child in Berlin and emigrated to the US with his parents at age 8. He has a Masters in Fine Arts in sculpture. More of his work can be seen on his website: www.peterbulow.com.
Fort Tryon Park is a public park located in the Washington Heights section of the borough of Manhattan in New York City, USA. It is situated on a 67 acre (270,000 m²) ridge in Upper Manhattan, with a commanding view of the Hudson River, the George Washington Bridge, the New Jersey Palisades and the Harlem River. Once known by the name “Chquaesgeck” by local Lenape Indians, it was called Lange Bergh (Long Hill) by Dutch settlers until the 17th century.
Fort Tryon Park is also site of The Cloisters, a branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art devoted to medieval art and culture, and home to the Unicorn Tapestries. The Cloisters incorporates several medieval buildings that were purchased in Europe, brought to the United States, and reassembled, often stone by stone.