Senatore’s Queens Museum debut showcases her strong interest on modern protest and how it has had great affect the world. Her strategic use if the term Piazza Universale goes unnoticed as the term directly makes reference to the idea of different groups of people to meet and then work collaboratively. Senatore would re-create this herself by composing an hour and a half long public performance involving over 320 participants from a myriad of different creative worlds. From spoken word artists, to an Afro-Colombian bullerengue group, to a LGBTQ symphonic band. The performance was dedicated to the past and present civic struggles of New York City communities. In summary Senatore put her heart on her sleeve through this exhibition and for that I commend her, to call this a revolutionary piece I feel would be a dis-service to her as the piece is not for her gain, but it is to bring light to past campaigns of activism and how their impacts ring through the halls of our world today, making not what she did to be revolutionary, but to shed light on the revolutionary.
Louis Comfort Tiffany was an American artist who started his career as a painter but became well-known for his stained glass designs. He even opened a glass factory in Corona, New York, where the Queens Museum houses the Neudstat Collection of Tiffany Glass to this day.
The collection was started by Mr and Mrs Neudstat, an Austrian immigrant couple who bought their first Tiffany lamp from a secondhand store for $12.50. Excited about discovering an American-made piece for their home, they began to collect Tiffany’s works, until they grew to own the most comprehensive Tiffany collection over the course of fifty years.
Located within Queens’ famous Flushing Meadows Corona Park, the Panorama gives what Raymond Laster & Associates called a “God’s eye” view of the city. Commissioned by World’s Fair President Robert Moses, Laster and a crew of over 100 were in charge of creating the Panorama for the 1964 World Fair. In its original introduction, the model also featured a series of lights that created a night and day cycle that are no longer present in the current day Panorama, having fulfilled their term.
Over the years, the model has been adapted to display the ever-changing shape of New York City and it’s boroughs, and anyone can “adopt” a building for as little as $50. This money helps aid in the adaptation and maintenance of the model.
The Panorama featured in the Queens Museum today allows the viewer to walk around the model on a series of glass walkways, still giving one the “God-like” view the original creators intended. The walls surrounding the walkway now display exhibitions. Until July 30, the Panorama’s walls are lined with The Lavender Line: Coming Out in Queens, an exhibition that highlights the 25th anniversary of the Queens Pride Parade.
Panorama provides the viewer the chance to acknowledge how vast New York City’s five boroughs truly are. The immense attention to detail present in this work allows the viewer to quickly identify where they live or places they know, even from afar. The glass panels make it seem as if one is walking above the artwork, immersing the viewer in their experience of the model.
Laster & Associates’ piece is a refreshing take on the architecture and cityscape of New York City. Panorama creates a connection to the landmarks of the city that are often overlooked by its residents, due to its tourist nature.
Panorama is on permanent display in the Queens Museum, a short walk away from the 7 train at 111 St.