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Public Art Fund Talks: Stan Douglas
Public Art Fund Talks are presented in partnership with The Cooper Union.

Stan Douglas’ free virtual talk on January 28 centers on his new permanent public commission Penn Station’s Half Century, 2020, a captivating photographic series that reconstructs nine remarkable but forgotten moments from the history of the original Pennsylvania Station (1910-1963). The artist has created this monumental site-specific artwork for the newly opened Moynihan Train Hall in New York City, by weaving together hundreds of photographs of staged costumed performers with digitally recreated interiors of the demolished Station. Challenging himself to work on a massive scale and with a technically demanding media, Douglas has created a landmark artwork that responds to the historic past and cutting-edge future of the busiest transportation hub in North America.

For Penn Station’s Half Century, Douglas drew on archival research to recreate serendipitous and poignant moments that range from an impromptu vaudeville show directed by Burt Williams during an epic snow storm in 1914, to final moments of affection between soldiers and their loved ones before being deployed in 1941 for duty during World War II. The cinematic quality of the nine panels revives these moments in uncanny detail. The resulting images pay tribute to McKim, Mead & White’s original landmark building and to the layers of human experience that bring our civic spaces to life. Spanning more than 80 feet in the Ticketed Waiting Area adjacent to the skylit boarding concourse, this is Douglas’ largest public installation to date and first permanent public art work in the United States. His artist talk will offer behind-the-scenes insights into the making of these groundbreaking photographs and contextualize them in Douglas’s practice.

Jan 28, 2021 05:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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