About the Exhibition
British conceptual artist Gillian Wearing’s cast bronze tribute to the groundbreaking photographer Diane Arbus will be on view at Central Park’s Doris C. Freedman Plaza beginning in October. Arbus lived near and frequented the park, which was much like an open-air studio where she interacted with everyday New Yorkers and created what would become some of her most celebrated works. Wearing has chosen to depict Arbus at lifesize, poised with her finger on the shutter button of her camera as she might have appeared in the park. Presented informally, at street level without a plinth, passersby are able to experience the work up close. Details of the sculpture—including Arbus’s shoes and parts of the camera—will be painted realistically to further humanize the appearance of the bronze statue, while a plaque will accompany the monument bearing Arbus’s name and quote, “If you scrutinize reality closely enough, if in some way you really, really get to it, it becomes fantastic.” The installation coincides with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum’s major survey of Wearing’s work, Gillian Wearing: Wearing Masks, opening on November 5, 2021.
Gillian Wearing’s exhibition is curated by Public Art Fund Director & Chief Curator Nicholas Baume with Associate Curator Katerina Stathopoulou.