Say hello to spring with this whimsical new public art installation in Rockefeller Center!
Plantoir, Blue first made its appearance on Friday, March 18, and will be visible in the iconic plaza through Friday, May 6. Created by married artists Claes Oldenburg & Coosje van Bruggen, “Plantoir, Blue” is their interpretation of the gardening tool in motion, almost making it seem like the trowel “fell from the sky” as it stands erect with its shovel end in the ground.
The artists are known for their playful, large-scale renditions of everyday objects like the fruit bowl, the toolshed and the toybox. They like to “fix them in moments of energetic motion,” as can definitely be seen in this display.
Though Oldenburg and van Bruggen spent much of their art careers in NYC, they haven’t displayed here often. In fact, this is the first public installation of work by Oldenburg and van Bruggen in New York since a version of Plantoir in red was displayed on the roof of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2002.
The blue color was inspired by Dutch workers’ overalls, is the first cast of this edition of the sculpture. There are editions of Plantoir, Red permanently installed at the Fundacao de Serralves, Porto, Portugal and the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids, MI.
“There’s no better herald for the city’s transformation into spring, or for the unfolding of Rockefeller Center’s reimagined landscapes and spaces—including Radio Park, the new green space on top of Radio City Music Hall—than Oldenburg and van Bruggen’s Plantoir, Blue,” said EB Kelly, Managing Director at Tishman Speyer and Head of Rockefeller Center.
“We are no stranger to large-scale, stop-you-in-your-tracks cultural moments, and the return and reinvention of this classic work is perfectly timed to welcome New Yorkers to the city’s lively heart of culture, commerce, and community.”
From mid to late April, the sculpture will be joined by Rockefeller Center’s new Easter landscape installation.
You can enjoy Plantoir, Blue through May 6, 2022 at the Fifth Avenue entrance to the Channel Gardens at Rockefeller Center.