Best Reason To Hate Ugly Public Art (2008)

METRONOME, 1999

METRONOME, 1999, by Kristin Jones and Andrew Ginzel, is an enormous wall sculpture ambitiously exploring "the nature of time, geographical, historical, astronomical, as well as past, present, future and the infinite [sic]." The main panel is composed of gold-flecked brick rippling away from a smoking hole. A chunk of rock, floating cylinder, and reaching hand adorn it. To the left, a line of electronic numbers scrolls at different speeds, confusing tourists: "Is that the national debt?" The volume and variety of pedestrians' conjectures as to the function and meaning of the work fascinated me at first. Then I remembered that the piece is hideous. Not to mention hopelessly obscure—unless you locate it within the long tradition of monstrous representations of femininity, where hidden parts issue senseless waves of blood. Virgin Megastore building, south end of Union Square

Newsletters

All-access pass to top stories, events and offers around town.

Sign Up >

No Thanks!

Remind Me Later >