Storm King Art Center

Sara Falque

As a part of our yearly field trip, this summer we visited the Storm King Art Center; a 500 acres sculpture park located at Mountainville in the town of Cornwall, Orange County, north of New York City.

The Storm King Art Center was founded in 1960 and found its course in 1961 as its founders, Ralph. E. Ogden and H. Peter Stern, became devoted to modern sculpture. In 1966 the museum began to place sculptures in the landscape, and the outdoor museum gradually evolved into what we see today; a collection of more than 100 modern and contemporary large-scale sculptures, situated in the landscape with consideration to the art work’s immediate surroundings and distant views.

The Storm King Art Center consists of a museum building where photographs, paintings and indoor installations are exhibited, and an outdoor area containing four different zones – the North Woods, the Museum Hill, the Meadows and the South Fields – for it’s monumental art pieces.

Several of the museum’s large-scale sculptures are situated in the Meadows, and the expansive South Fields combine views of the surrounding mountains with large-scale and site-specific work. The North Woods, on the other hand, provide an intimate setting for smaller-scale work, and the Museum Hill features many of Storm King’s early acquisitions. On site, visitors can experience Storm King’s collection either by walking, riding a bicycle or jumping on and off one of the trams that circulate within the park.

From the permanent collection we highly appreciated, among many other of the museum’s art pieces, “the Arch” by Alexander Calder, the “Storm King Wall” by Andy Goldsworthy, the ”Storm King Wavefield” by Maya Lin, the “Schunnemunk Fork” by Richard Serra, the “Nickel Couch” by Johnny Swing, and Joel Shapiro‘s untitled sculpture from 1994.

While at Storm King, we also took a look at the museum’s temporary exhibitions for this summer; “The White Sculptures” by David Smith (1906-1965) and “Outlooks” by Heather Hart (1975 – ). Six of Smith’s white steel constructions are installed outdoors on Museum Hill, while smaller sculptures are displayed in the indoor galleries. Hart’s “the Oracle of Lacuna”is an outdoor installation where a domestic rooftop, sticking up from the ground, comes to life with music, workshops, movement, spoken word and poetry, and other events.

After having enjoyed a couple of hours in the park, we had dinner at one of the local restaurants – the Storm King Tavern – before returning back home to New York.

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