Tag Archives: sculpture

New Project Heads to London for Bloomberg LP

In late October, Bloomberg L.P. unveiled its new European headquarters designed by Foster + Partners and a special installation by New Project. The 3.2 acre London site includes numerous commissioned artworks and an exhibit designed by Studio Joseph about the legendary Bloomberg Terminal’s history. New Project worked closely with Principal Wendy Evans Joseph and Associate Connie Wu to realize their design which complemented the aesthetic of the building while capturing the unique, forward-looking identity of Bloomberg.

The display took the form of three interlocking and one stand-alone Möbius strip-like shapes made of aluminum and fiberglass to support embedded terminals and educational information. Studio Joseph’s impressive design for the individual components cantilevered eight feet from a single point requiring New Project to employ our engineering as well as fabrication know-how.

In July, Studio Joseph provided New Project with a 3-D model of the finished display from which we created design engineering drawings for production. The substrate was 5-axis milled from 3-pound EPS foam and fitted around a laser cut aluminum structure. The forms were glassed with carbon fiber, fiberglass, and epoxy resin, then coated with a satin automotive finish. After the Bruce Mau-designed graphics were applied, another clear coat was applied for protection. The terminal supports were fabricated out of steel and then powder coated. From end to end, the entire installation measured almost 24 feet long by 20 feet wide.

Once the fabrication was complete, we built custom crates and oversaw the shipping to London where we installed the display while the finishing touches to the building were still being undertaken.  We completed the entire project in under 3 months, including overseas shipping and installation. The end result was a stunning interactive display that invited people to learn about the technology that revolutionized an industry and laid the foundation for a billion-dollar business.

Design drawings for one component of Mobius installation

Milled foam readied for aluminum support structures

Laser cut aluminum support structures

Matt welds the supports to the steel base

 

Frank fits the support into the foam

Dustin preps the fiberglass forms

After the forms are painted and graphics applied, Frank and team build custom crates to ensure safe passage to London

Chris’s view of the installation process from above

 

 

 

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VICE DISCO PLANE

Vice Media needed to create a unique focal point for a Delta Air Lines event they were recently curating at Kinfolk in Brooklyn. Delta Launchpad was a series of workshops and performances targeting young entrepreneurs and innovators so the event had to shine. Vice Media’s Production Coordinator approached New Project to build an oversized rotating disco ball in the shape of an airplane to cast a little sparkle on the party. Although we only had two weeks to make it happen, we said, “No Problem!”

Our designers quickly drew up a few options in RHINO based on the client-provided concept sketches. The plane components were CNC’d out of foam, assembled as if a model airplane kit, painted, then covered in mirror tiles.

The plane was engineered and suspended to ensure it would rotate smoothly from the ceiling-mounted motor.

After receiving images of the nearly completed plane, our clients were obviously pleased. The Production Coordinator’s comment? “Whoa! I am blown away, it looks amazing!”

Another day, another disco.

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Jay CNC’s the parts out of foam

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The parts are assembled like a model airplane kit

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The plain plane

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Assorted engine parts being painted

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Luke and Chris begin mirror application

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It even looks good upside down!

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Luke applies finishing touches

Taking her for a test spin

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On the Road to Menlo

Eight years ago, New Project collaborated with the artist and avid cyclist David Byrne on a series of 9 bike racks he designed for the New York City Department of Transportation. The temporary public art pieces were created at the time to spur more interest in biking in the city. Each powder-coated steel bike rack was sited in a location that related to its design: a dollar sign on Wall Street, a woman’s shoe in front of Bergdorf Goodman, an abstract sculptural form in front of MoMA.

8 years later, David conceived of a new set of bike racks to be installed in Menlo Park, CA near Silicon Valley in conjunction with his exhibition at PACE Gallery. Fortunately for us, he once again reached out to New Project to collaborate. We worked with the artist to execute five site-specific designs including a pointing finger, a cloud, a rocket, an infinity shape, and the @ symbol.

David came by the studio last week and we asked him a few questions about the project.

New Project: We understand you were inspired by your role as a juror for the New York City Department of Transportation’s 2008 CityRacks Design Competition to create your own bike rack designs. How did you arrive at the designs for the first round of racks that New Project fabricated?

David Byrne: Yes, the city held a competition for bike rack designs and I wasn’t submitting my designs (mine would be difficult to mass produce) but as a fun item to amuse the DOT (Dept. of Transportation) and increase awareness. I sketched out imaginary racks for specific neighborhoods. Pace (David’s gallery) saw them and suggested we actually make them….and with Scanga (Bill Scanga of Pace Gallery) we began to knock around ideas with New Project about how that could be done.

NP: What was your experience like working with New Project?

DB: This is going to sound like gushing, but it was so easy and their work is so rigorous and they’re so sensitive to the way we creative types think – perfect.

NP: How did you feel seeing your bike racks across the city?

DB: I LOVED seeing the racks out there – I felt “I’m a physical part of New York City now!”

NP: Are you inspired to make more public art? Would you like to see David Byrne bike racks in other cities, other countries?

DB: I’m very open to the idea – though as mentioned, to do mass produced racks at a reasonable cost they’d be less one of a kind than these….however these draw attention to the need for racks, even if they don’t solve the problem.

NP: How did the 2016 Silicon Valley series come about? 

DB: With a collaborator, I’m doing an immersive installation in a Pace pop up gallery and they thought – hey, how about more bike racks for the Silicon Valley people out here?! Some businesses or Stanford might even buy some. So again I sketched out some ideas that are very specific to that world….

NP: In your 2010 book, Bicycle Diaries, you share your adventures from the perspective of a global urban cyclist and humanist. The advantages of seeing a city from the seat of a bicycle are obvious; how do you think we can convince more people to share your passion?

DB: I think one can’t “convince” people – and doing it because it’s good for you or for the planet isn’t going to convince folks either – but if they try it they may enjoy it…forgive me, this is terrible, but realistic, if a man sees beautiful women passing by on bikes, he may decide it might be something worth trying….if business folks begin to commute on bikes and the city makes it safe, then it lessens the stigma that only scruffy types or hipsters ride bikes.

NP: Where are you and your bike heading next?

DB: I’ve got a loaner during the install in Menlo Park and Palo Alto!

The Institute Presents: NEUROSOCIETY, an immersive theatrical experience co-created by David Byrne and Mala Gaonkar, will be on view October 27, 2017 through March 31, 2017 in Menlo Park, CA.

David Byrne drawings for new bike racks
David Byrne’s concepts for the new bike racks

Scale model of DB bike rack 
Patrick with a scale model

Molly welding up DB's infinity bike rack
Molly welding the infinity rack

Molly setting up, checking the tack welds
Molly checks the tack welds 

DB rack post-grind
Infinity post-grind

After powder coating
After powder coating

DC and team with finished racks

Team David with the bike racks before painting (left to right): Dennis, Aaron, Kelly, Molly, David, Patrick, Ethan, Fielding

 

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My Very Eccentric Mom Joyfully Sells Unique Ninjas at PS163Q

In 2013, artist Nanna Debois Buhl received a commission through the Public Art for Public Schools program to create a work of art for a new addition to a high school in Flushing, Queens. Nanna and her consultant, Nathalie Pozzi, reached out to New Project for assistance with the fabrication of the sculptural installation.

After visiting the school, Nanna created a proposal for a model of our solar system combined with a collection of mnemonic phrases written by students from the school. Both components were to be made out of steel with a bright, red, glossy, powder coated finish.

New Project worked with the artist, her consultant, the NYC School Construction Authority, engineers, and the general contractors to ensure the work would be fabricated and installed as the artist envisioned as the school addition was being built.

We spoke to Nanna about The Planets, her new installation at PS 163Q in Flushing, NY.

NP: How did this project come about? When did it start?

NDB: The project began in spring of 2013, when I was invited to participate in a competition for a public commission for PS163Q initiated by the NYC Department of Education, NYC School Construction Authority, and the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs Percent for Art Program.

I made a site visit to get an understanding of the school, its profile, and its architecture. My proposal was an installation for the school’s lobby consisting of a model of the solar system and a collection of phrases, written by students from the school, for remembering the order of the planets in the solar system (planetary mnemonics).

Over the last three years, the work has been developed in collaboration with New Project (fabrication), Nathalie Pozzi (artist’s consultant) and Anni’s (graphic design).

Have you done other public commissions or works in schools?

Yes, Journey to the End of the Night (2010) is a public commission I have made for a high school in Denmark. It covers the four walls of the school’s canteen. Cut out on wooden wall panels, the motif is a map of the position of the stars over the high school on the opening day in 2010. The star formations are accompanied with titles, which are places – from literature, film, music, art, philosophy, and science; works that the students may encounter during their time at the school.

My public commission Atlas of Anatomy (2013) is created for an educational institution in Denmark that houses nursing, teaching, physiotherapy, social education, and social work programs. Silkscreened on 3,000 square feet of inner glass walls, the work consists of 15 photographs of body parts of people in different ages and a cut-up text composed of 133 medical, philosophical, and literary quotes about the body. Many of the quotes were culled from the library of the institution whose educational programs, to a large degree, deal with various aspects of the human body. I think of the commission as an abstract interpretation of the historical anatomical reference book, a journey through a collective body composed of many bodies and voices.

You mentioned that these mnemonic texts (acronyms which take the initial letter of each list item to create a memorable phrase) were created by the students. How did you get them to participate?

I was in dialog with the (now former) principal who gathered a group of students who were interested in participating. I gave them the guidelines for constructing the sentences which they then wrote.

Were you surprised by the responses you received? Do you have any favorites?

It was so exciting receiving the texts from the students. I love the fact that they have used language that I would never have come up with: Nutella Sandwiches and Ninjas, and names such as Mei and Ming – representative of the demographics of the school, which has many Mandarin speaking students.

What other surprises did you encounter in the design process?

The typographic aspect of the work was developed in collaboration with Denmark-based graphic designer Anni’s. We decided to work with the format of the writing exercise book and to think of the two walls where the texts are placed as pages in an open book. The letters of the mnemonics were placed on lines alluding to the exercise book format (and making the installation process more simple). At the end of the last text block there are some empty lines – a built in invitation to continue constructing new sentences. The work combines a scientific model (the solar system) and the imaginative universes of the children (the texts). I think of the model as a motor in a machine that can continue producing texts. And I see the students’ texts as a kind of conceptual poetry (constraint-based writing).

The work invites students to interact with it, to come up with their own mnemonics. Does all of your work entail collaboration or a back and forth of sorts?

Conversations (that be with experts in a given field, an art work, or, as here, a group of students) are always an important part of my working process. In the three public commissions I have made for educational institutions, I have invited people to contribute with textual material: For Atlas of Anatomy I made a “call for quotes” and for Journey to the End of the Night a lot of people helped me gather titles. I think of these works as cacophonic and therefore I also like the working process to have a collective aspect.

A big difference between an art work in a white cube setting and in a public commission is that the audience of the latter lives with the work for a long period of time. I, therefore, like to include an element in the public commissions that can unfold or be discovered over time (such as The Planets built in invitation to make up new sentences).

What was the most interesting aspect of working on this project?

Involving the students and receiving their texts. Developing a work for this specific context taking the educational setting and the audience (students and teachers) into account. And seeing the work transform from a 3D model to an actual physical work. After 3 years of preparation and fabrication it was stunning to enter the school lobby last week and see the work installed, finally.

What’s next?

My next project, I Imagined That Things Were Speaking, is a solo show at MSU Museum of Contemporary Art in Zagreb opening in October 2016. It will consist of a show inside the museum and a large projection on the façade of the museum building. All the exhibited works are photographic “readings” of various cityscapes through objects, plants, animals, and architectural components. The exhibition will thus both address a bypassing audience in the street and a museum audience. I am currently thinking a lot about composing the exhibition, so that it can speak to these different viewers with their different attention spans.

To see more of Nanna’s work, visit her website.

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Mnemonic text cut by our CNC machine

Steel planets orbiting in the shop
The planets in the shop before they begin their orbit

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The arms are inspected after welding

Beautiful powder coating!
Planets post powder coating

Artist Nanna Debois Buhl watches as the work is installed
Artist Nanna Debois Buhl watches as the work is installed

Installation in process
In the beginning, there was only Neptune

Lobby view
View of The Planets from the lobby entrance

 

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A New Sculpture in Stamford

After talking to several metal shops, Louis Gesualdi decided he needed someone special to fabricate a large steel sculpture for one of his clients. The president of Stamford, CT-based Gesualdi Construction reached out to New Project after checking out our website and finding precisely what he was looking for. Gesualdi was working on Synchrony Financial’s corporate headquarters in Stamford, CT where the firm had engaged artist William C. Seepaul Jr. to create a large sculpture for its corporate campus. Seepaul had translated the consumer financial services company’s minimalist logo into three dimensions, enlivening it with a dynamic ribbon spiraling around bright yellow columns.

When asked about the design, Seepaul stated, “the idea was to create a sculpture that would embody the philosophy of what Synchrony Financial represents. The ribbon is an element that I introduced to illustrate movement. The rising form shows the upward path, an ever moving body that can adapt, yet remain strong, hence the material (steel). The ribbon is a visual representation of musical notation, symphonic harmony, elegance and balance that can be as subtle and simple as it is complex.”

The work, entitled Symphony, was Seepaul’s first large-scale public sculpture. “The mere fact that this sculpture was to be installed in a public place meant that a highly-skilled team of fabricators had to translate the engineering plans and make a tangible, beautiful, and sound piece,” said Seepaul. “There were over 25 sections to the ribbon that had multiplanar curves that had to be painstakingly welded by New Project.  This was in addition to New Project fabricating the columns, and the support lattice as well as finishing, prep, and painting then ultimately installing. Excellent work!”

Gesualdi Construction gave New Project approximately 4 months to translate Seepaul’s watercolor renderings and engineering drawings into a full-fledged steel sculpture to be installed at a June ceremony on Synchrony Financial’s corporate campus. After the steel was precisely cut, the pieces comprising the ribbon were rolled into shape and the entire sculpture was assembled, welded, and painted. We then transported the 17-foot tall sculpture to the site where, over the course of two days, we bolted the piece to its concrete foundation, welded the spiral segment to the sculpture’s columns, and made final surface touch ups to ensure a pristine finish.

Louis Gesualdi was pleased with the results. “It’s fantastic! It came out better than great!” the contractor stated when asked how the piece was ultimately received. In addition to the final fabrication of the sculpture, Gesualdi was responsible for the redesign and rebranding of three large building on Synchrony’s campus, juggling multiple details in a fast-paced environment. Having worked with artists before, Gesualdi had previously overseen the fabrication of outdoor sculpture, although nothing quite as challenging as Symphony. “Everyone was exhaling, glad that it all went well,” remarked Gesualdi.

Symphony sculpture rendering by Artist William Seepaul Jr.

Rendering of Symphony sculpture by artist William Seepaul Jr.

I-beams are welded in the shop to form the base for the sculpture.

I-beams are welded to create the sculpture’s base.

Brett welds from his perch in the shop.

Brett welds the sculpture from his perch.

The sculpture is primed in the shop before being painted.

The sculpture is primed before painting.

The spiral is test-fitted on to the columns before all components are welded together.

The spiral is test-fitted to before welding the components together.

Careful measurements are made to perfectly align the spiral components.

Meticulous measurements are made to ensure perfect alignment of the spiral segments.

Kelly grinding the weld to give a clean edge to the spiral.

Kelly grinds the welds to give the spiral a clean edge.

The sculpture is crated for protection after receiving its final coat of paint.

The columns are crated to protect the finish after painting.

Pino supervises as the sculpture is loaded onto the truck.

Pino supervises as the sculpture is loaded onto the truck.

The sculpture is crated and ready for transport to Stamford for installation.

The sculpture is loaded and ready for transport to its permanent home in Stamford.

Brett ensures the welds are perfect as the sculpture is installed on site in Stamford.

Brett touches up the welds during installation.

SYMPHONY-0034 image by W Seepaul

The final installation and a pristine finish. Photo by William Seepaul Jr.

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New Project, Marthas Vineyard Art Collection

ART FOR THE PEOPLE- ART IN HOSPITALS

Martha’s Vineyard Hospital’s Permanent Collection 


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Preliminary sketch for a custom pedestal and case for a Stella Waitzkin book sculpture.

Last week, we were approached by a lovely couple who were looking to build an enclosed pedestal and mount for a cast-resin sculpture titled Wedding Book by the late artist, Stella Waitzkin. Assisting collectors in building conservational and practical means of displaying their acquisitions is something we have specialized in since we opened our doors, however, this particular circumstance was something very special.

The couple that came to visit us here in Brooklyn was Edward F. Miller and Monina von Opel, of Martha’s Vineyard. This sculpture is not destined for this family’s own private collection, quite the contrary. Mr. Miller is the Vice Chairman of the board of Trustees at Martha’s Vineyard hospital, the only hospital in Dukes County. For the past three years, Mr. Miller and his wife have dedicated themselves to advancing the hospital’s permanent collection. Placing art in hospitals has been a hot topic as of late, and recent articles by NBC News and The Wall Street Journal have shown a significant increase in awareness of the health benefits art can have on not only the patients, but on their families and caregivers as well. Transforming the traditionally sterile and industrial environment of a hospital can help people heal, as recent scientific research has suggested. So, while this is not necessarily a new concept, the model set in place by Mr. Miller and his colleagues is certainly something to be admired.

Photo: Edward Miller and Monina von Opel, husband and wife team and public faces of the collection. (Photo Courtesy of Martha’s Vineyard Magazine)

Photo: Edward Miller and Monina von Opel
(Photo Courtesy of Martha’s Vineyard Magazine)

This is not art for art’s sake, this collection has been developed and polished with the Hospital’s patients, families, employees, and location in mind. While the collection does not include any million-dollar listings, the Hospital has catalogued over 350 works of art that have all been donated to the institution. That’s right. The Hospital is not reallocating resources for acquisitions that should go towards providing the highest quality of healthcare to its community. In fact, not only is the artwork donated, but you’ll often find Mr. Miller and Mrs. Opel hanging and lighting the artwork themselves in the hallways of the Hospital.

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Photo: The hallways of the Hospital are lined with over 350 pieces that are in some way associated with the Vineyard. (Photo Courtesy of Martha’s Vineyard Magazine)

Having recently undergone a multi-million dollar building renovation, Martha’s Vineyard Hospital had allocated a small budget to purchase and hang some nondescript poster art that you could find in any hospital in any city of the country. But that wasn’t good enough for Mr. Miller and his companions. He wanted the art on the walls to be able to reflect what was happening outside of the walls. In an article for the Martha’s Vineyard Times, Mr. Miller was quoted :

“The hospital’s architects offered us art, but it was all generic. You could be anywhere. And we wanted you to know you were on the Vineyard. We have so many creative people on the Island, we thought it would be a fantastic thing to bring that creativity into what would otherwise be very institutional.”

Martha’s Vineyard is a place that is bursting with creativity, so why not take advantage of that fact and pay tribute to those who call the Vineyard their home and provide respite for those looking for just a glimpse outside the hospital walls. Catalogued and labeled as any proper collection should be; visitors, patients, staff members, and even the general public can be found at any time during the day wandering the hallways of the Hospital admiring the work.

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Photo: “Moonrise/Summer,” oil on linen by Kib Bramhall, outside the intensive care unit waiting room.” Photo by Susan Safford (Photo Courtesy of Martha’s Vineyard Times)

New Project firmly believes in the power of art to evoke emotion, tell a story, engage, and challenge the viewer. Above all though, we believe in arts ability to help heal. If a piece of art can offer someone a moment of peace, encourage someone to get up out of a bed, or provide an escape from a stressful environment, then it is doing its job.

There is a screening process for all donations, and of course they cannot accept every piece into the collection. Visit the Hospital’s website for more information and to view the extensive collection.

think & build

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