Olafur Eliasson’s "The New York City Waterfalls" Finds a New Home

MARCH 10, 2009 – NEWYORK: The LED lights used to illuminate The New York City Waterfalls after sundown will find a new home at Atlanta Ballet’s new headquarters. Public Art Fund will donate 40 LED fixtures to Atlanta Ballet, fulfilling the commitment to reuse ninety percent (90%) of The New York City Waterfalls’ construction materials in other construction projects. Now a part of this historic project will live on in Atlanta.

The New York City Waterfalls is one of the most ambitious works of public art ever created. Public Art Fund was able to transform the artistic vision of internationally acclaimed artist Olafur Eliasson into this monumental art project by working in collaboration with the City of New York, and in partnership with Tishman Construction Corporation and a team of almost 200 engineers, designers, project managers, consultants, permitting specialists, electricians, construction workers and others who worked on the project for over two years.

The LED lights subtly illuminated The New York City Waterfalls to simulate a continuous twilight. Each waterfall utilized five feet rows of assembled LED fixtures. Set on a timer, the lights turned on as the sun began to set and off as the sun began to rise. Following the October 13 closing day, the fixtures were placed in storage until the appropriate functional use presented itself. “We are thrilled to help out another non‐profit art organization while simultaneously extending the life of The New York City Waterfalls,” said Susan K. Freedman, President of Public Art Fund. “It’s the ideal scenario.”

Atlanta Ballet plans to move into its new headquarters, the Michael C. Carlos Dance Centre, in summer 2010. The tentative design plans are to install the lights on the outside of the building in two locations along all glass walls, which will illuminate the inside of the dance studios. The glass walls are a major component of the architectural concept for the building, which is a warehouse conversion located among other industrial spaces and lofts on the City’s west side. “It is very exciting that our new home will have a connection with this major public art project and we are particularly pleased with the recycling aspect of this initiative,” said Thomas M. Holder, Co‐Chair of Atlanta Ballet’s Capital Campaign and CEO of Holder Construction, who is overseeing renovation of the building. “A significant portion of the building renovation budget has been dedicated to environmental initiatives and the architect has implemented LEED‐design strategies into the renovation process so this is a perfect fit.”

About The New York City Waterfalls

Commissioned by Public Art Fund, and presented in collaboration with the City of New York from June 26 through October 13, 2008, The New York City Waterfalls consists of four monumental, man‐made waterfalls temporarily installed at sites along the waterfront in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Governors Island: one on the Brooklyn anchorage of the Brooklyn Bridge, one between Piers 4 and 5 below the Brooklyn Heights Promenade, one in Lower Manhattan at Pier 35 north of the Manhattan Bridge, and one on the north shore of Governors Island. The 90‐ to 120‐foot‐tall Waterfalls were erected on the shoreline and were designed to protect waterquality and aquatic life. They operated seven days a week and were lit after sunset.

Project Support

The New York City Waterfalls by Olafur Eliasson is presented by Public Art Fund, in collaboration with the City of New York. This project is presented in partnership with Tishman Construction Corporation, with Water Tours provided by Circle Line Downtown, and assistance from Consolidated Edison and Weil, Gotshal & Manges, LLP. It is made possible in part by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, which is funded through Community Development Block Grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.  Lead supporters include Bloomberg LP, Agnes Gund and Daniel Shapiro, Mayorʹs Fund to Advance New York City, and The Rockefeller Foundation.  Major support has been provided by The Wachovia Foundation, Carson Family Charitable Trust, Charina Endowment Fund, CIT, Forest City Ratner Companies, The Leonard and Evelyn Lauder Foundation, The Silverweed Foundation and Ann Tenenbaum and Thomas H. Lee.  Generous support has been provided by Fiona and Stanley Druckenmiller, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP, Debra and Leon D. Black, Cindy and Tom Secunda, Anonymous, Danish Ministry of Culture, The Diller‐von Furstenberg Family Foundation, Kathy and Richard S. Fuld, Jr., Danielle and David Ganek, Marc Haas Foundation, Mimi and Peter Haas, Hamleys, Jennifer and Matthew Harris, Jill and Peter Kraus, Stavros Niarchos Foundation, Peter Norton Family Foundation, Steven Rattner, David Rockefeller, Judy and Michael Steinhardt, Tiffany & Co., Tishman Speyer, and Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP, with additional funds from Vital Projects Fund, Inc., American Express, Donald A. Capoccia, Deloitte, James R. Dinan and Elizabeth R. Miller, Judy and Jamie Dimon, Lauren and Martin Geller, The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, Mary & Michael Jaharis, Robert W. Johnson IV Charitable Trust, Leonard Litwin, Nancy and Duncan MacMillan, Donald B. Marron Charitable Trust, Merrill Lynch & Co. Foundation, Inc., The New York Mets Foundation, Inc., Nancy and Morris W. Offit, Peter Peterson, Jack Resnick & Sons, Inc., The Marshall Rose Family Foundation, Aby Rosen/RFR Holding LLC, Stephen M. Ross/The Related Companies, Steven Roth, Structure Tone, David Teiger, Van Wagner Communications, LLC, The Walt Disney Company, Joan and Sanford Weill, Merryl and Charles Zegar Foundation, Ark Restaurants/Sequoia, ICAP North America, The ABNY Foundation, Brookfield Properties, Elise and Andrew Brownstein, The Durst Organization, EMC Corporation, Eugene M. Grant & Co., LLC, Extell Development Company, Gilder Foundation, Goldman Sachs, The William and Mary Greve Foundation, IBM, International Integrated Solutions, Nastasi & Associates Inc., Anna Marie and Robert F. Shapiro, Larry A. Silverstein/Silverstein Properties, Carmen and John Thain, The Jonathan M. Tisch Foundation, Laurie M. Tisch Illuminations Fund, The Steve Tisch Foundation, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, Barbara J. Fife, General Growth Properties, Inc, Daniel and Estrellita Brodsky Family Foundation, Melva Bucksbaum, Creative Link for the Arts, Constellation New Energy, Egg Electric, Fifth Floor Foundation, Nathalie and Charles de Gunzburg, Danny Meyer’s Hudson Yards Catering, Ann and Gilbert Kinney, Holly and Jonathan Lipton, Ninah and Michael Lynne, Audrey and Danny Meyer, Edward John Noble Foundation, Nortel, Donna and Benjamin M. Rosen, Jonathan Sobel & Marcia Dunn, and David Wine and Michael MacElhenny. Assistance has been provided by Cisco/ePlus, Inc. SEALSecurity LLC, A‐Val Architectural Metal Corporation, BP Mechanical Corp., Cosmopolitan Decorating Co. Inc., Hugh J. Freund, Glenn Fuhrman, Furthermore: a program of the J.M. Kaplan Fund, Elizabeth S. and Steven B. Gruber, Iceland Naturally, George and Mariana Kaufman, Movado Group, NBC Universal, Patty Newburger and Brad Wechsler, Red Crane Foundation, Joanne and Paul Schnell, Charles Short, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, LLP, Melissa and Robert Soros, Billie Tsien and Tod Williams, Jeanette Sarkisian Wagner, Brennan Brothers Company, Inc., Donnelly Mechanical Corp., Abby Kinsley and Richard Davison, OHM Electrical Corp, Tri‐State Dismantling Corp., Randye and Gerald Blitstein, Sara Fitzmaurice and Perry Rubenstein, Anonymous, Peter and Linda Ezersky, Harbour Lights, Marilynn and Ivan Karp, Allen Kolkowitz and Christopher Kusske, The American‐Scandinavian Foundation, Joan Feeney and Bruce Phillips, Beatrice and Lloyd Frank, Hilary and Peter Hatch, Jenny Dixon and John Boone, Katherine and Richard Kahan and the Frances and Jack Levy Foundation.

About the Artist

Olafur Eliasson was born in Copenhagen in 1967, and grew up in both Iceland and Denmark. He attended the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen and currently divides his time between his family home inCopenhagen and his studio in Berlin. Studio Olafur Eliasson is a laboratory for spatial research that employs a team of 30 architects, engineers, craftsmen, and assistants who work together to conceptualize, test, engineer, and construct installations, sculptures, large‐scale projects and commissions. Recent works reflect Eliasson’s increased interest in architecture and the built environment. Since the mid‐1990s, he has presented his work in numerous exhibitions and outdoor venues. His work was recently the subject of a major mid‐career retrospective at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, which was presented in an expanded exhibition at The Museum of Modern Art and PS 1 Contemporary Art Center in New York. The retrospective is currently on view at The Dallas Museum of Art, and will travel to The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago in May.

About Public Art Fund

Since 1977, Public Art Fund ( has worked with over 500 emerging and established artists to produce innovative temporary exhibitions of contemporary art throughout New York City. By bringing artworks outside the traditional context of museums and galleries, Public Art Fund provides a unique platform for an unparalleled encounter with the art of our time.  Public Art Fund is a non‐profit art organization supported by generous contributions from individuals, foundations and corporations, and with funds from National Endowment for the Arts; New York State Councilon the Arts, a State Agency; and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.

About Atlanta Ballet

Founded in 1929, Atlanta Ballet is the longest continuously operating ballet company in the United States. Atlanta Ballet’s eclectic repertoire spans ballet history, highlighted by beloved classics and inventive originals. Among Atlanta Ballet’s proud and unique 79‐year history are its three Artistic Directors, Miss Dorothy Alexander, whose vision brought dance to the South; Robert Barnett, who turned Atlanta Ballet into a professional company; and currently, and for the past 14 years John McFall. Under McFall’s leadership Atlanta Ballet continues its commitment to share and educate audiences on the empowering joy of dance. Atlanta Ballet opened the Centre for Dance Education in 1996 and is dedicated to nurturing young dancers while providing an outlet for adults to express their creativity. With diverse class offerings and student population, the Centre serves over 150,000 people in metro Atlanta each year. Atlanta Balletʹs roots remain firmly grounded in the Atlanta community and continue to play a vital role in the cityʹs cultural growth and revitalization.