Art at Site Steve Tobin Biennale

Steve Tobin


Jing'an Sculpture Park
For the past week truckload after truckload of massive and important sculptures in bronze and steel by renowned American sculptor Steve Tobin have been transported into the city of Shanghai, where they have been unloaded and sited at various high profile locations around the city and at Jing’An Sculpture Park for the Sixth Annual Jing’An International Sculpture Project (JISP). The 48 sculptures will be officially welcomed at an opening set to take place on Monday, September 19th, at which Tobin will appear for an artist’s lecture. The exhibition runs through November 20th.
Tobin is perhaps best known for the Trinity Root 9/11 bronze memorial sculpture that was the first such art tribute to the victims of the World Trade Center attack in Lower Manhattan, and continued to be for more than a decade until the official 9/11 Memorial and Museum opened in 2014. A 6’ high maquette of the Trinity Root has recently been acquired by the 9/11 Museum for its permanent collection. On the month of the 15 year anniversary of the attack, bronze remnants of the old sycamore tree that “saved St. Paul’s Chapel” from falling debris on that fateful day will be on display at the Sculpture Project in Shanghai.
In addition, works from several of Tobin’s series will be on view, including the monumental Steelroots, one of the largest ones ever made, that is sited in front of the Shanghai Natural History Museum; along with important works from the artist’s Syntax, bronze Walking Roots, Termite Hills and Matzoh House, among others.
The JISP is a public art project hosted by Shanghai Jing’An Government and Office of the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Urban Sculpture, organized by the Office of the Jing’An Urban Sculpture Committee of City Appearance and Municipal Administration Commission of Jang’An District and Jing’An Sculpture Park. Purple Roof Art Gallery acts as the curating organization; while Mr. Huang Du, who is an independent Chinese curator of renown, undertakes art direction of the project.
The original “Urban Fox” wore a somewhat melancholy expression, but the recycled version has eyes that sparkle. The new sculpture is part of a small micro-ecosystem that brims with life.
“I expect to see the birds return, hatch their eggs here and raise their fledglings,” Rinsler said.
Mao Wencai from Purple Roof Gallery said the renovated sculpture echoes the theme of this year’s exhibition — “rebirth of the city.”
The new “Urban Fox” was unveiled to the public on September 20, when the two-month Jing’an International Sculpture Project began.
A documentary on the birds will be screened in the sculpture park of the Shanghai Natural History Museum, Mao said."