Press release for PUBLIEK around the City Hall, 2007

The work ‘Don’t Miss a Sec’ by Monica Bonvicini (1965) is sure to amaze. Positioned next to the steps of the City Hall, beneath the mayor’s window, the sculpture seems to be nothing more than a perfect reflective cube. But upon closer inspection we realise that it provides a minimalist space for a public lavatory with a 360-degree view of the surroundings through the crystal clear glass. Even during ‘intimate moments’ the user need not miss a second of what is going on in the street outside.
Recording by Germaine Kruip (1970) is a light installation in the hall of the former head post office – a national monument dating from 1923 – next to the City Hall. While the building awaits a new function its interior has been stripped of all furnishings thus revealing the full architectural glory of the enormous space. With the aid of extraordinarily bright lamps, Kruip has created a work that allows us to experience the building in a totally new way and that will surely remain with the visitor for a long time.
Big Mind Sky is one of the so-called ‘Rainbow-poems’ by Ugo Rondinone (1964). The nine-meter broad rainbow is sited, like a logo for the city, above the roof of the former Generale Bank opposite the City Hall. Big Mind Sky will watch over the city night and day inviting us to reflect upon the meaning of this mysterious phrase.

This temporary exhibition is intended to encourage exploration of the possible roles of contemporary art in the public realm in our city centre today. The city is changing; art changes with it.

It is hard to imagine a better moment for PUBLIEK. A new vision is currently being developed for the Coolsingel from the Hofplein to the Erasmus Bridge. The former main post office has recently been sold to the private sector and will take on a new function, and the possible demolition of the former Generale Bank opposite the City Hall will influence thinking about the public space around the Coolsingel. Furthermore PUBLIEK is taking place in the year that Rotterdam is the City of Architecture.

The idea for PUBLIEK was developed by Rein Wolfs (advisor to Sculpture International Rotterdam) in close consultation with Sculpture International Rotterdam. The project is accompanied by a catalogue with an essay by Rein Wolfs. The publication is available free of charge from various locations in the city.

Publicatiedatum: 12/05/2015