The Peninsula Autumn, 2015
The Art of Pink
The LOTUS Blossoms
In honour of Breast Cancer Awareness Month this October. ‘Pink Lotus’, a large-scale light sculpture by Peruvian artist Grimanesa Amorós, will be installed on the façade of The Peninsula New York. On view from October 1 through November 15, 2015, the light sculpture is part of ‘The Art of the Pink’ and has been exclusively curated for The Peninsula New York by Circa 1881.
TEXT: ANN TSANG
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Measuring 31 feet in length and 41 feet in height, with a interests in the fields of social history, scientific research and critical depth of 17 feet, artist Grimanesa Amorós’ striking ‘Pink Lotus’ sculpture is fashioned from ribbon-like red and pink LED lights and diffusion film material to create a pink lotus flower that will be mounted on a secure structure attached to The Peninsula New York’s landmarked facade, located at 5th Avenue and 55th Street. The light sculpture installation will activate the entrance to the hotel with a focus on the Palladian window above the door and the carvings of Ceres, Roman Goddess of agriculture and abundance, and Diana, the Roman Goddess of the hunt, the moon and childbirth. By placing the installation on the front facade, Amorós is supporting Breast Cancer Awareness Month by drawing attention to both the Roman Goddesses, who represent the power of women worldwide, and to the lotus flower’s symbolic associations with creation, enlightenment and rebirth.
“The first time I saw a pink lotus was in Shanghai, and I was immediately memorised by its beauty, shape and movement. It is known to be a source of enlightenment, purity and abundance,” says the artist about the inspiration for this specific work. “I intend to activate and highlight the façade above the main entrance, especially the Roman goddesses, because I see the area as the heart of the hotel and enjoy the parallels of these female figures and the breast cancer cause.”
Grimanesa Amorós was born in Lima, Peru and lives and works in New York City. She is a multidisciplinary artist with diverse theory, which have greatly influenced her work. She thoroughly researches the locations, histories and communities of her installation sites and her process remains both organic and instinctive. This intuitive relationship to technology is a distinctive feature of Amorós’ practice.
Amorós has often drawn upon important Peruvian cultural legacies for inspiration for her large-scale light-based installations, which she has presented around the globe from Mexico City to Tel Aviv, Beijing, and of course, New York. She continues to be inspired by Peru’s history for her art but she does not hold an essentialist or nostalgic view of her subject. She often gives talks at museums, foundations and universities where her lectures not only attract future artists, but also students and faculties engaged with science and technology.
As in all of Amorós’ work, ‘Pink Lotus’ is an installation that will create a dialogue with the existing architecture and the history of the site, as well as with the community. While the physical location of this installation is important, it is the relationship that the lighting sculpture will have with its viewers that will make it memorable. The dramatic “after dark” experience provided by the artist’s use of LED lighting and the beauty and spiritual symbolism of the Lotus flower will undoubtedly make the installation one of the highlights of ‘The Art of Pink’.