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Elmgreen & Dragset, The Hive, 2020, stainless steel, aluminum, polycarbonate, LED lights, and lacquer, commissioned by Empire State Development in partnership with Public Art Fund for Moynihan Train Hall, Photo: Nicholas Knight, courtesy Empire State Development and Public Art Fund, NY

Artist Projects

Elmgreen & Dragset

The Hive

A site-specific installation commissioned for the new Moynihan Train Hall
Pennsylvania Station, New York
Dec 30, 2020

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced today the January 1st opening of the new Moynihan Train Hall, along with three unprecedented site-specific art installations by Stan Douglas, artist duo Elmgreen & Dragset, and Kehinde Wiley, counted among the most innovative and revered artists working today. As part of the Governor’s visionary transformation of the nation’s busiest transportation hub, the artworks are commissioned through a partnership between Empire State Development (New York State’s economic development agency) and Public Art Fund (the leading non-profit that commissions and presents art in public spaces). A testament to New York’s creativity, diversity, and richly layered heritage, the three monumental commissions complement the new cutting-edge Train Hall, while embracing its civic character. Offering the public a fresh perspective on the history and grandeur of the original Pennsylvania Station and James A. Farley Post Office, Douglas’s, Elmgreen & Dragset’s, and Wiley’s installations bring a sense of wonder and humanity to these public spaces, and will evoke civic pride and delight for generations to come.

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Elmgreen & Dragset, The Hive, 2020, stainless steel, aluminum, polycarbonate, LED lights, and lacquer, commissioned by Empire State Development in partnership with Public Art Fund for Moynihan Train Hall, Photo: Nicholas Knight, courtesy Empire State Development and Public Art Fund, NY

With its unique history, distinguished architecture, and world-class art program, the expansive new Train Hall celebrates New York as a worldwide leader in innovation and culture. The broad and diverse public passing through the new Train Hall daily will be greeted by three artworks that enhance the space’s democratic sense of place. The Train Hall’s public art program sets a new standard for contemporary public art in a landmark civic space. Whether or not you’re catching a train, the public art program makes the Train Hall a destination in its own right. Transforming the travel experience for hundreds of thousands of Long Island Rail Road and Amtrak passengers—and named after its longtime champion, the late Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan—Moynihan Train Hall will once again welcome residents and visitors alike into an architectural marvel with a monumentality befitting New York.

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Elmgreen & Dragset, The Hive, 2020, stainless steel, aluminum, polycarbonate, LED lights, and lacquer, commissioned by Empire State Development in partnership with Public Art Fund for Moynihan Train Hall, Photo: Nicholas Knight, courtesy Empire State Development and Public Art Fund, NY

Made from a set of up to nine-foot-tall models of skyscrapers that hang upside down like stalactites from the ceiling, Elmgreen & Dragset’s breathtaking ceiling installation, The Hive, defines the 31st Street entryway to the Train Hall. A mirrored base allows commuters to feel projected into the cityscape and creates a sort of mirage of an imaginary city, the artists explained. Mr. Dragset said the work was named The Hive to reflect how cities, with their richness of diversity, function because people accept certain rules for coexisting. “It’s about a huge collaboration in order to make everyone survive,” he said. The installation contains nearly 100 buildings, most made of aluminum, that the artists hoped would offer commuters a new experience each time they entered.

Read More at The New York Times

That’s an important aspect of it, that people do see themselves reflected in the base plate. We like that there’s an interaction between the audience and the work itself.

Ingar Dragset

Artist Projects — Elmgreen & Dragset's "The Hive" at the Moynihan Train Hall, Dec 30, 2020