Creative Time Presents VIGIL by Jenny Holzer
September 27th, 2019
Creative Time is pleased to present VIGIL, new public light projections by artist Jenny Holzer. Bringing together voices from across the United States, VIGIL will address the pressing issue of gun violence in America, with texts by poets, survivors and citizens. From October 10-12, the projections will be on view nightly at Rockefeller Center beginning at 8PM.
For her third time working with Creative Time, Holzer will illuminate the iconic buildings at Rockefeller Center with first-hand accounts, poems, and responses by Americans who have experienced the everyday reality of gun violence. In this large-scale work, each voice is magnified in scrolling letters of light over the buildings’ facades. Both stark and kind, the work serves as a vigil for victims of gun violence and an acknowledgement of the regularity with which these incidents occur. Holzer included selected texts from Bullets into Bells: Poets & Citizens Respond to Gun Violence, stories from Moments that Survive, collected by Everytown for Gun Safety, and poems by teens growing up in a nation affected by shootings in their communities and schools.
Holzer’s long-established practice of showcasing text in the public sphere is exemplary of Creative Time’s mission to generate spaces for free expression and creativity. “Jenny Holzer has been an innovator in the field of public art. It is an honor to work with her to realize this project, addressing one of the most pressing issues we have today as a nation. Her work amplifies the words of those directly affected and brings personal perspective to staggering statistics,” says Creative Time Executive Director Justine Ludwig.
In 2004–2005, Holzer and Creative Time presented For New York City: Planes and Projections and For the City. The two-part project, which took place in the sky and on public landmarks, featured a squadron of airplanes flying in succession along the Hudson River while pulling banners emblazoned with text, including Holzer’s Truisms. The nighttime projections presented the words of acclaimed poets such as Wisława Szymborska, Yehuda Amichai and Henri Cole on iconic New York sites, including 30 Rockefeller Plaza. Holzer was also one of 25 artists who participated in The 42nd Street Art Project from 1993-1994, which transformed Manhattan’s Historic West 42nd Street into a dynamic, around-the-clock public art exhibition.
Holzer will also be honored at the 2019 Creative Time Gala, which will take place on Thursday, October 24, 2019 at Skylight on Vesey, a former trading floor of the New York Mercantile Exchange. Reserve your seat and get your tickets to the after party today!