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Tuesday April 29, 2014 | by Andrew Page

OPENING: Dan Graham collaborates with landscape architect for Metropolitan Museum rooftop project

On a blustery spring day, the site-specific work "The Roof Garden Commission" by artist Dan Graham in collaboration with landscape architect Günther Vogt opened atop the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan. Architectural constructions of sensuously curving beams of steel supporting curved panels of lightly mirrored glass, the work is arranged on a grassy lawn that connects the rooftop to the adjacent green landscape of Central Park. The glass is carefully designed to both reflect and be permeable to light, offering complex and constantly-shifting perspectives for visitors walking in and out of the structure. The outdoor installation will be up through November 2, 2014, available to museum visitors when the weather permits.

“We are thrilled to present this extraordinary new commission,” said Met Museum director and ceo Thomas P. Campbell in a prepared statement. “For decades, Dan Graham has created work that challenges viewers to think in new and thought-provoking ways about the streets and cities they traverse every day. In his reimagining of the Met’s roof, visitors will discover a picturesque landscape that is at once unexpected and familiar.”

“What Dan creates is a new form of quixotic landscape architecture that combines nature and community within a city environment,” said Sheena Wagstaff, the Museum’s Leonard A. Lauder Chairman of Modern and Contemporary Art.  “It is work that draws paradoxically on formal 18th-century Northern European gardens, while also referencing the glossy sleekness of corporate skyscrapers and the American suburban vernacular.”

For the past half-century, Graham has dealt with issues of the architecture of public space through a career of multi-disciplinary works inlcuding photography, video, and performance. Since the 1970s, he has focused on defining space through metal and glass constructions, which he calls "pavilions" in reference to the ornamental architectural strucutres one might find in formal gardens. This has made his collaboration with Vogt particularly apt.

During the rooftop exhibition's run, the museum's second-floor Lila Acheson Wallace Wing for Modern and Contemporary Art will be exhibiting related Graham projects including videos, photographs, and another, smaller pavilion—Triangular Solid with Circular Cut-Outs, Variation K (2011–14). 


April 29 - November 2, 2014
"The Roof Garden Commission"
Dan Graham with Günther Vogt
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
1000 Fifth Avenue (at 82nd Street)
New York, New York 10028
Tel: 212.535.7710

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