About the Exhibition
Artists Keith Edmier, Roxy Paine, Kiki Smith, Kim Sooja, and Brian Tolle were commissioned to make dynamic new works suited for specific sites within Central Park for the Public Art Fund and the Whitney Museum of American Art’s co-curated exhibition in Central Park as part of the Whitney Museum’s 2002 Biennial Exhibition. Together, these five installations represent a broad overview of contemporary approaches to public art that are both thought-provoking and accessible to the largest possible audience.
Bluff, by Roxy Paine (b.1966, New York City, NY), is a fifty-foot-tall tree made of brilliantly reflective stainless steel. Bluff's heavy industrial plates form a two-foot-wide trunk that support more than five thousand pounds of cantilevered branches, welded together from twenty-four different diameters of steel pipes and rods. Its gleaming frame remains unchanged as its environment shifts from winter into spring. By announcing its grand, manmade artifice rather than attempting to blend in with the surrounding real plants and trees, Bluff is a cunning reminder that Central Park is itself an artificial sanctuary, a product of city planners as much as Mother Nature.