In the Saddle with Nick Cave’s Heard NY

Creative Time NYC #IHEARDNY Grand Central Station

Will the horses roam? Are they still? Do they move at all? The mystery behind the performance by the horses in Grand Central would soon be answered. We circled the terminal on a bustling Monday afternoon, looking for the colorful creations by Nick Cave, as part of the MTA’s Arts for Transit program. We eventually found rows of costumes that looked like mighty steeds in the Vanderbilt Hall. At 2PM, they came alive, as they did earlier at 11AM today for the grand opening of their week-long performance accompanied by a group of percussionists and harp players.

“For HEARD•NY, artist Nick Cave will transform Grand Central Terminal’s Vanderbilt Hall with a herd of thirty colorful life-size horses that will peacefully “graze” and periodically break into choreographed movement—or “crossings”— accompanied by live music. The project, which is open to the public free of charge, is presented by Creative Time and MTA Arts for Transit as part of a series of events celebrating the centennial of Grand Central.”

After seeing the advertisements in subway cars over the weekend, I made a made mental note to take my son to see Heard NY. He was more excited just to take the train than watch the horses in action. Too bad he fell asleep before the dancing commenced, and the stringy fibers on the performers bloomed a kaleidoscope of colors on both sides of the room. With his head on my shoulder, my son clutched his first toy horse, whose design is practically identical to Nick Cave’s design. One of the show’s attendants was even impressed to see how similar the toy made by Lamaze was to Heard NY. As for other similarities, completely unrelated to each other, this visual artist Nick Cave is not to be confused with renowned punk rock frontman Nick Cave of the Bad Seeds. Apparently, many others talking about the Grand Central exhibit are mixing them up the same way as I did.

If you’re in NYC, take a moment to experience the magic of Heard NY. It’s currently being captured and shared on all the major social media platforms. Creative Time, the company creating art in public spaces created a really neat website that filters all of the relevant micro blogs and status updates about Heard NY via Foursquare, Facebook, Twitter, and Vine.

For my parting shot, I leave you with Jake Lo Matta’s quote from Raging Bull (also sampled on RATKING’S “Piece of Shit“).

“Though I’d rather hear you cheer when I delve into Shakespeare. ‘A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse!’ I haven’t had a winner in six months. And though I’m no Olivier, if he fought Sugar Ray, he would say, ‘That the thing ain’t the ring, it’s the play.’ So give me a stage, where this bull here can rage, and though I can fight, I’d much rather recite. That’s entertainment.”

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