And not out of boredom. Sebastian Errazuriz has created a new public art piece for Times Square that is the antithesis of the high-energy, fast-paced neighborhood. It’s a close-up, black-and-white, three-minute video of the artist looking around and yawning that plays on 50 digital billboards throughout Times Square, which triggers a domino effect of sleepy, open mouthed gaping, since we all know yawns are contagious.
Errazuriz’s idea was to instill “a pause in the city that never goes to sleep,” which informs the title of the work. The yawn-athon takes place every night through January 17th at 11:47pm from 42nd to 47th Streets between Broadway and 7th Avenue.
“A Pause in the City That Never Sleeps” is part of Midnight Moment, a monthly presentation by the Times Square Advertising Coalition and Times Square Arts, and is put on in conjunction with Performance Space 122’s COIL 2015 Festival. Tim Tompkins, President of the Times Square Alliance, told Art Daily, “The beauty of Sebastian Errazuriz’s piece is its attempt to induce a contagious moment of calm and pause at the otherwise bustling crossroads of Times Square. That juxtaposition is sure to be powerful for all who have the chance to see it. We will see how the largest digital display of yawns in history will affect the city that never sleeps.”
Errazuriz’s work is seen as a peaceful protest again the mass marketing and consumerism which overwhelms Times Square. By yawning with him, passersby are joining in the protest. The artist said, “I hope that the video can offer a brief moment of pause that can remind us of our urgent necessity for free space and time that can allow us to recover a stronger sense of awareness…I am yawning at everything and all of us; we need to wake up.” On the final night of the art piece, he will be at Duffy Square for a massive yawn-in.
Neighborhoods : Times Square