New ‘portal’ sculpture to provide real-time live stream between New York City and Dublin

March 26, 2024

Image courtesy of portals.org

A new art installation debuting in New York City this spring is like something out of a science fiction novel. Created by Lithuanian artist Benediktas Gylys, The Portal is a public sculpture broadcasting real-time video of two places. This spring, the interactive art installation will debut in the Flatiron District and in Dublin, Ireland, visually linking the iconic cities and their residents.

Image courtesy of portals.org

The Portal was unveiled in Vilnius, Lithuania and Lublin, Poland in 2021, as the world recovered from the pandemic. Gylys at the time described the project as a “bridge that unifies” and “an invitation to rise above prejudices and disagreements that belong to the past,” according to The Verge.

The launch of the sculpture in New York marks a new way to experience public art and connect with others, even those an ocean away.

“We are honored to host the Portal’s North American debut on the Flatiron Public Plazas, at one of New York City’s most dynamic intersections,” James Mettham, president of the Flatiron NoMad Partnership, said.

“This real-time connection between two iconic public spaces in global cities on either side of the Atlantic will bring people together, both physically and digitally, becoming a captivating attraction for New Yorkers and visitors alike.”

Presented by the Flatiron NoMad Partnership in collaboration with the New York City Department of Transportation’s Art Program (NYC DOT Art) and the Simons Foundation, the Portal will be installed on the Flatiron South Public Plaza at Broadway, Fifth Avenue, and 23rd Street, showing off the famous Flatiron Building.

In Dublin, the Portal will face O’Connell Street, the city’s main thoroughfare, with a view of the General Post Office building and the Spire of Dublin. Dublin City Council delivered the sculpture as part of its designation as the European Capital of Smart Tourism 2024, according to a press release.

“As we celebrate our Capital designation, the PORTAL project symbolizes Dublin’s commitment to connecting not just within the EU but also with cities like New York, with which we share a deep historical and cultural bond,” Lord Mayor of Dublin Daithí de Róiste said.

“This project exemplifies the fusion of technology and engineering to bring communities from across the world closer together.”

The Portal installation will run through the fall, with planned programming and cultural performances planned in each city to be “enjoyed by people in the other city via live stream.” The programming starts in mid-May to coincide with the NYCxDesign Festival.

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  1. B

    Pathetic. What a waste of money. Feed and house the homeless.