“Cloud City,” the mammoth, site specific installation by Tomás Saraceno is now in place and open to the public on the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. The piece will be enjoyed by local and tourist alike for the next seven months.
A visit to the Met can result in a sensation that approaches the symptoms of Stendhal syndrome. It’s an easy task to overcome oneself in the charge of such a tremendous spectrum of beauty. The diverse brilliance of cultural directions and theoretical time travel that occurs may be more properly suited to advanced civilizations of the future. The best way to combat the awesome undertow is to take it slow and return often.
The first stop on your next Metropolitan outing should be to the roof to experience the marvel that is “Cloud City.” Sixteen interlocking modules make up this piece that is open to guests on a time-based ticket system that is free with admission.
Be sure to check the guidelines for entry into the structure as there are some footwear requirements and important recommendations. For instance, women are encouraged to wear pants or shorts as there are more angles than any one person can possibly account for.
The following photographs from our encounter with “Cloud City” have not been retouched or manipulated. It is an accurate depiction of the odd perspectives that are achieved through the visual labyrinth. It is a delightfully disorienting experience that opens up into some of the grandest views imaginable of Central Park and the New York skyline. “Ride,” is thought to be a word to avoid when describing fine art but in this case with timed entry and the funhouse atmosphere it is an appropriate term. Approach the piece with that attitude and the joy of the experience will not be lost.
Photographs: Scott Lickstein.
15 May – 4 November 2012 (weather permitting)
Metropolitan Museum of Art