Projects 195: Park McArthur

Elevation of The Museum of Modern Art on 53 Street with cutaway view below street level. Image © 2017 Diller Scofidio + Renfro

Projects 195 Exhibition Space. 2018 3370

Elevation of The Museum of Modern Art on 53 Street with cutaway view below street level. Image © 2017 Diller Scofidio + Renfro

Let’s begin with a description of the area where McArthur’s exhibition is located. The 4th floor space is rectangular and has 2 entrances connected by a spacious hallway. Depending on which way you enter, the sound of automated glass doors opening and closing arises to your left or to your right. These doors lead to other galleries. If you situate yourself facing the doors, small, individual grey letters on the wall to your left - one-third of the way up the wall - spell out: The David Geffen Galleries. The galleries behind these doors were named for Geffen following a 2016 donation he made in support of the Museum’s renovation and expansion.

Turn your back to the doors, and directly opposite are floor-to-ceiling windows – they take up an entire wall and overlook the garden, named the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden after one of the Museum’s founders; her home once stood where the garden is today. The windows start at the 5th floor of the Museum and end on the ground floor. As you walk towards the windows a sturdy, transparent barrier rises from the floor a few feet before the glass. This allows visitors a wide view of the garden. Sound travels up from the floors below.

As you face the windows, there is a long white wall to your right. Up high on the wall, close to the windows, grey letters in the same style as The David Geffen Galleries spell out: The Werner and Elaine Dannheisser Gallery. The Dannheissers gave most of their art collection to MoMA, and this 4th floor gallery bears their names. The Projects series, of of which this particular exhibition is a part, was re-named the Elaine Dannheisser Project Series in 2006 in honor of Ms. Dannheisser.

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