Grand Concourse to receive 2 art installations

“The Grand Concourse is one of NYC’s great thoroughfares and along with so many of our vibrant public spaces, it deserves to be honored with great public art,” - Cultural Affairs commissioner Tom Finkelpearl.
Photo by Deon Soogrim/NYC Department of Cultural Affairs

An iconic Bronx thoroughfare will serve as the setting for two public art installations.

NYC Department of Cultural Affairs and NYC Department of Transportation are asking sculptors and other three-dimensional artists to design artwork for two locations on the median along the Grand Concourse.

The commission is part of Phase 4 of DOT’s overall reconstruction of the thoroughfare spanning East 175th Street to Fordham Road.

As part of Mayor de Blasio’s ‘Great Streets’ initiative, the project includes a full roadway reconstruction of the service roads; converting existing underutilized channelized space to expand, landscape and revitalize existing medians.

The mainline travel lanes would be resurfaced with pedestrian islands added at signalized crossing locations where feasible.

A total of $400,000 is available for the commissioning of permanent artwork at East 187th Street and Grand Concourse and Anthony Avenue and Grand Concourse.

East 187th Street and Grand Concourse’s capital design would close the street to through traffic from East 187th Street.

Anthony Avenue is a north-south route connecting Claremont Park to the thoroughfare at an acute angle creating large underutilized space currently marked in channelization.

Anthony Avenue and Grand Concourse’s capital design would include a large curb extension at this site.

Artwork could help indicate the intersection of these two streets while providing additional traffic calming and enlivening the pedestrian environment.

“The Grand Concourse is a storied stretch of the Bronx with beautiful art deco buildings that are often adorned with low relief sculptures,” noted Emily Colasacco, DOT Art/Summer Streets director. “Adding new art along this thoroughfare will help solidify its reputation as the Park Avenue of the Bronx.”

Prospective artists are asked to submit images of past work for consideration.

If selected as finalists, artists can propose sculptures or other three-dimensional art installations at the aforementioned locations.

Both sites are located on the roadway median/greenway being created as part of the project.

Artists can propose installations at one or both locations.

The city, in partnership with a committee of outside arts and design professionals and community representatives will select the finalists.

A DCA spokesman confirmed the panel will consist of local arts professionals and representatives from Community Board 5; Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr.’s office and the City Council.

“The Grand Concourse is one of NYC’s great thoroughfares and along with so many of our vibrant public spaces, it deserves to be honored with great public art,” expressed Cultural Affairs commissioner Tom Finkelpearl.

The art commission’s goal is to provide an engaging, distinctive visual marker helping to identify the Concourse as a major center of activity for the Bronx.

The city is interested in design concepts reflecting the surrounding culture, community and neighborhoods; enhancing the Grand Concourse’s overall appearance and atmosphere and conveying a sense of place which identifies the location and its surroundings for locals and visitors alike.

The deadline to apply is Sunday, June 25.

For additional information, visit www.nyculture.submittable.com/submit.

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