Kathryn Andrews | Sunbathers I & II
HIGH LINE ART, New York, NY, USA | 1.4.2016–31.3.2017
KATHRYN ANDREWS
SUNBATHERS I & II

THE ARTIST’S FIRST PUBLIC COMMISSION

APRIL 2016 – MARCH 2017
ON THE HIGH LINE AT WEST 18TH STREET
ON THE HIGH LINE AT LITTLE WEST 12TH STREET

New York, NY (April 25, 2016) – Presented by Friends of the High Line, High Line Art is pleased to announce the upcoming High Line Commission by artist Kathryn Andrews titled Sunbathers I & II (2016). Covering two aluminum boxes with silk screened black-and-white photographs, the artist introduces two monolithic sculptures to the High Line’s landscape. Installed on the High Line at West 18th Street and under The Standard, High Line at Little West 12th Street, the sculptures will be on view from May 2016 to April 2017. 

In her sculptures and wall works, Kathryn Andrews appropriates images from popular culture, often from American movies, television, and stock photography archives. She then alters and recontextualizes them into three-dimensional configurations to create new narratives where viewers are invited to rethink the images’content in relation to their own bodies. Frequently, Andrews works with stainless steel and aluminum, polished to a mirrored finish, to further challenge the perception of reality and its depiction, and the ubiquitous photographic world that proliferates in advertising and on screen.

Rendering of Kathryn Andrews,Sunbathers I, 2016. Courtesy the artist.2 For the High Line, Andrews presents her first-ever public art commission, responding to two contrasting aspects of the elevated park: its relationship to nearby billboards and to the natural landscape. Andrews describes the High Line's environment as a “hyper-surreal image world,” composed of large-scale advertisements and commercial signs that surround park visitors as they stroll high above the bustling city scape. Andrews notes, by contrast, that the High Line's physical design offers visitors a chance to develop awareness of the body in relation to extreme natural weather conditions including intense winds, rain, snow, and sun.

Andrews’s first sculpture, Sunbathers I, is a towering box-like structure, silk screened with a black-and-white stock image of a public beach sign that announces, “Beyond This Point You May Encounter Nude Sunbathers.”Installed at West 18th Street, the sculpture houses misting nozzles that spray water intermittently at passers-by.Placing this work on the High Line, where nudity is not allowed, draws attention to the more risqué social mores displayed on nearby billboards. The second sculpture, Sunbathers II, installed under The Standard, High Line, is a large, horizontal aluminum box containing a giant fan and featuring a photograph of an ice cream cone. The fan's movement is juxtaposed with the adjacent static image, mirroring the park itself.

“Kathryn is one of the most exciting artists from California, and we are thrilled she is bringing a Finish Fetish aesthetic to the outdoor spaces of the High Line,” says Cecilia Alemani, the Donald R. Mullen, Jr. Director & Chief Curator of High Line Art. “I am curious to see how the viewers will react to this encounter, which is at the same time enigmatic and participatory.”