new-york

Richard Prince

Times Square

Over six years ago, Public Art Fund Inc. initiated an unusual project in Times Square. With the cooperation of Spectacolor, Inc., they began to sponsor programmed spots by artists on that company’s large electronic signboard, which is prominently positioned on the north side of the marble-clad office building at 1 Times Square. Since the inception of “Messages to the Public” in January 1982, 77 artists have presented projects there. Generally, each one runs for about 30 seconds and is repeated every 15 to 20 minutes during its month-long run. Sandwiched between advertising and public service announcements, “Messages to the Public” provides a charged and provocative forum for artists to work in a temporary format with the elements of Spectacolor: color, light, movement, and time itself. These ephemeral works have tested and expanded ideas about public art. By bringing work into the glitzy

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