Light Sculpture Installation

80 White Street

ARGENTUM | Manhattan, NY 2018

ARGENTUM, a new site-specific commission by AIM alumna Grimanesa Amorós. The 9-foot wide sculpture, located at the future home of the extended AIM program in Lower Manhattan at 80 White Street, connects the island of Manhattan and the Bronx.

Media: LEDs, diffusion and reflective material, custom lighting sequence, electrical hardware. stainless steel. Dimensions: 9 ft x 5 ft 4 in  x 5 ft 4 in
Press Release: https://www.grimanesaamoros.com/argentum-bronx-museum-of-the-arts/
ARTIST STATEMENT (English / Espanol)

ARGENTUM draws inspiration from the newly renovated Landmark Building on 80 White St. 

Having steel as the material choice of the piece was influenced by the industrialism of lower Manhattan. All throughout New York’s history, Manhattan was the hub of industry. This boom in city wealth and the creations of bridges in the area, led me to think about the building blocks of the city.

80 White Street has become home to the the Bronx Museum‘s Artist in Marketplace (AIM) Program, which can be found on the second floor of the building. AIM’s original headquarters was in the Bronx, and has now relocated to Manhattan. This program aims to connect artists to the art world, much like how steel supports an entire building.

ARGENTUM is comprised of two main sections. The left side is based on the island Manhattan, while the right represents the Bronx. New York started in lower Manhattan and expanded all the way to the Bronx. These two boroughs represent the limits of the city and the development of the future.

The relationship between 80 White Street’s steel foundation and AIM’s new future in Manhattan inspired me to combine two vital parts of the building; it’s foundation and residents. I decided to use stainless steel, but not the conventional reflective one. The stainless steel that’s being used is mirrored, but not as much to where the viewer can see their perfect reflection. The image one sees is blurred and slightly skewed, making it seem almost like silver, hence the name ARGENTUM. As the piece occupies most of the entrance, the viewer is constantly interacting with it. When entering and exiting the building, the observer sees themselves, but much like light’s speed, it can never be fully captured and only appreciated in movement.