The Roof Garden Commission: Dan Graham with Günther Vogt at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

April 29 – November 2, 2014 (weather permitting)

Installation Location: The Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden

American artist Dan Graham (born 1942, Urbana, Illinois) will create a site-specific installation atop The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden—the second in a new series of commissions for the outdoor site. Comprising curves of steel and two-way mirrored glass between ivy hedgerows, Graham’s structure is part garden maze, part modernist skyscraper façade. Set within a specially engineered terrain designed in collaboration with the Swiss landscape architect Günther Vogt (born 1957, Balzers, Liechtenstein), the work—titled Hedge Two-Way Mirror Walkabout—will be both transparent and reflective, creating a changing and visually complex environment for visitors. The Roof Garden Commission: Dan Graham with Günther Vogt will be on view from April 29 through November 2, 2014 (weather permitting). A variety of education programs will also take place in conjunction with the exhibition.

Dan Graham (b. 1942, Urbana, Illinois). Two Different Anamorphic Surfaces, 2000. Installation view from Wanås Foundation, Knislinge, Sweden

Dan Graham (b. 1942, Urbana, Illinois). Two Different Anamorphic Surfaces, 2000. Installation view from Wanås Foundation, Knislinge, Sweden

For the past 50 years Graham has engaged his interest in architecture and the way it structures public space through a multidisciplinary practice that includes writing, photography, video, performance, and—beginning in the 1970s—sculptural environments of mirrored glass and metal.  He calls these hybrid structures “pavilions” after the ornamental buildings that decorate 17th- and 18th-century formal gardens—architectural fantasies inspired by the ruins of classical antiquity.

Graham’s pavilions similarly invite romance or play, but their forms and materials have a more contemporary source: the gleaming glass facades of modern office towers.  For the artist, the mirrored cladding of a corporate headquarters symbolizes economic power and sleek efficiency; it also provides a certain camouflage, reflecting the world around it as it shields what happens inside from prying eyes.

With this signature material, Graham’s pavilions also transform observers of the work into performers within it, and, through the sight of their own reflections, make them acutely aware of their own viewership.

The artist’s pavilions likewise respond to their specific sites. The Museum’s Roof Garden, where the idyllic expanse of Central Park confronts the tall buildings of midtown Manhattan, is both of the city and at a certain remove from it.  The evergreen plantings that edge the parapets also reminded Graham of the shrubbery that often demarcates private property lines in the New Jersey suburbs of his youth. Graham’s collaboration with Günther Vogt further illuminates the site’s multilayered references—historic gardens, public parks, contemporary corporate architecture, and the suburban lawn—as its pavilion engages the viewer in a historic and complex mirror-play. For Vogt, landscape architecture is a heterogeneous field that unites different aspects of design with natural and social sciences.

We are thrilled to present this extraordinary new commission,” stated Thomas P. Campbell, Director and CEO of the Metropolitan Museum. “For decades, Dan Graham has created work that challenges viewers to think in new and thought-provoking ways about the streets and cities they traverse every day. In his reimagining of the Met’s roof, visitors will discover a picturesque landscape that is at once unexpected and familiar.”

Born in Urbana, Illinois, and raised in Winfield Township, New Jersey, Dan Graham lives and works in New York City. Graham has been investigating the relationship between architectural environments and those who inhabit them since the late 1960s. His diverse practice, which encompasses writing, photography, video, performance, and the creation of sculptural environments, has influenced generations of artists. Graham’s glass pavilions have been realized in sites worldwide, particularly in Europe. The Roof Garden Commission: Dan Graham with Günther Vogt is the artist’s first major site-specific commission in New York City since his 1991 installation, Dan Graham: Rooftop Urban Park Project at Dia Center for the Arts. Graham has had retrospective exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, Whitney Museum of American Art, and Walker Art Center (2009–10); Castello di Rivoli Museo d’Arte Contemporanea, Turin (2006); Museu Serralves, Porto (2001); Museum of Modern Art, Oxford (1997); Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven (1993); Kunsthalle Berne (1983); and the Renaissance Society, University of Chicago (1981). He has participated in Documenta 5, 6, 7, 9 and 10 (1972, 1977, 1982, 1992, and 1997). Among the numerous awards he has received are the Coutts Contemporary Art Foundation Award, Zurich (1992), and the French Vermeil Medal, Paris (2001). He also was honored by the American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York, in 2010.

What Dan creates is a new form of quixotic landscape architecture that combines nature and community within a city environment,” said Sheena Wagstaff, the Museum’s Leonard A. Lauder Chairman of Modern and Contemporary Art.  “It is work that draws paradoxically on formal 18th-century Northern European gardens, while also referencing the glossy sleekness of corporate skyscrapers and the American suburban vernacular.”

Over the past 10 years, Günther Vogt of Vogt Landscape Architects, Zurich, has designed a wide variety of public and private outdoor spaces in Switzerland and Europe. These include the grounds of the Allianz Arena in Munich; the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, Tate Modern, and the Olympic Village in London; and the FIFA headquarters and Masoala Rain Forest Hall in Zurich.  Vogt is professor of landscape architecture at the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH) in Zurich and on the faculty of the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University. His survey Miniature and Panorama: Vogt Landscape Architects, Projects, 2000–2012 was published in 2012 by Lars Müller, Zurich.

Several other related projects by Dan Graham will be on view in the Museum’s modern and contemporary art galleries (Lila Acheson Wallace Wing for Modern and Contemporary Art, Second Floor, Galleries 917 & 918, Installation Dates: April 28–November 2, 2014) to complement the artist’s Roof Garden installation. The works include videos, photographs, and another, smaller pavilion—Triangular Solid with Circular Cut-Outs, Variation K (2011–14).

Triangular Solid with Circular Cut-Outs uses the familiar two-way mirrored glass of the skyscraper in an intimate, gazebo-type structure. Its form relates to both the moon gates of traditional Chinese gardens—round apertures designed to frame a particular view—and the mirrored walls of Rococo pavilions that reflect and amplify the effects of sunlight or candlelight. Also on display is a model of the triangular glass pavilion Double Exposure—Graham’s 1995 proposal for an exhibition in Germany, which was installed at the Serralves Museum in Portugal in 2003. One side of Double Exposure is a color transparency of the landscape directly outside. From inside the pavilion, the viewer confronts a curious doubling of vision that references, in part, 19th-century panoramas and other precursors of modern cinema. The videos on view explore other pavilions, and the photographs—mainly snapshots taken when Graham revisited the New Jersey suburbs of his youth—capture the extraordinary breadth of the artist’s interests.

In conjunction with the installation, the second in a new series of books considering the annual Roof Garden projects has been published. The Roof Garden Commission: Dan Graham with Günther Vogt features an essay by Ian Alteveer, Associate Curator, and an interview with the artist by Sheena Wagstaff, Leonard A. Lauder Chairman, both of the Museum’s Department of Modern and Contemporary Art. The 64-page paperback is published by The Metropolitan Museum of Art and distributed by Yale University Press ($9.95).

The Roof Garden Commission: Dan Graham with Günther Vogt and its publication were conceived by Sheena Wagstaff and curated by Ian Alteveer, in consultation with the artist. The exhibition is made possible by Bloomberg, with additional support provided by Cynthia Hazen Polsky and Leon B. Polsky.

The installation will be featured on the Metropolitan Museum’s website at www.metmuseum.org.

Sandwiches, snacks, dessert, and beverage service—including espresso, cappuccino, iced tea, soft drinks, wine, and beer—will be available at the Roof Garden Café daily from 10:00 a.m. until closing, as weather permits. A martini bar will also be open on the Roof Garden on Friday and Saturday evenings (5:30–8:00 p.m.).

More Than 4,000 People Will Join The Fight Against Pancreatic Cancer At PurpleStride Chicago Walk/Run On April 26th At Chicago’s Lincoln Park

Thousands will run and walk to raise funds and awareness for pancreatic cancer, the fourth leading cause of cancer death in the United States, at PurpleStride Chicago 2014 on April 26, 2014PurpleStride Chicago will benefit the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, the national organization creating hope in a comprehensive way through research, patient support, community outreach and advocacy for a cure.

Pancreatic Cancer Action Network logo.  (PRNewsFoto/Pancreatic Cancer Action Network)

Pancreatic Cancer Action Network logo. (PRNewsFoto/Pancreatic Cancer Action Network)

PurpleStride Chicago is meant as a day of hope and inspiration for people who have been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer as well as a tribute to people who have passed away from this terrible disease,” said Kelli Steckbauer, Chicago resident and volunteer for the Chicago Affiliate of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. “Money raised helps fund personalized support for patients, their families and caregivers, as well as supporting research that will hopefully lead to better treatment options to increase survival for pancreatic cancer patients. We are proud to join tens of thousands of people across the country who are taking part in more than 50 PurpleStride events this year. We all share one common goal – to end pancreatic cancer.”

This year, more than 46,000 Americans will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and more than 39,500 will die from the disease. Pancreatic cancer has one of the lowest survival rates of all major cancers – 73 percent die within one year of diagnosis and the five-year survival rate is just six percent. Pancreatic cancer is anticipated to move from the fourth to the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States by 2020.

All those who would like to join the fight against pancreatic cancer are invited to attend the event, which will take place at Lincoln Park- Montrose Harbor, Grove 16 – 4400 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60640.  Participants have their choice of walking, running, or running a timed race on a course along the beautiful Lake Michigan.  The event will include live music and other family friendly festivities throughout the day. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. with opening ceremonies starting at 9:45 a.m. To register, visit www.purplestride.org/chicago.

We are deeply committed to supporting the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network in its effort to double the survival rate of pancreatic cancer by 2020 and providing real hope to those who have been touched by this insidious disease,” stated “Charlie’s Angels” Team Captain Jennifer Odegard. “We are striding for the people who are bravely fighting this disease and for those who have lost their battle. We are striding for my husband, Chicago Police Department Officer, Charles Odegard, who served with the CPD for 21 years. Due to the lack of early diagnostic tools, he was simply diagnosed too late and lost his battle at the young age of 48. I am appreciative every day for the support we received from Charlie’s fellow officers and the City of Chicago during his journey with this disease. Like a true brotherhood, they fought with Charlie to the end holding fundraisers in his honor and being there for any emotional support needed. Now, on April 26th, many more of our family members and friends will come together again to honor and remember Charlie at PurpleStride Chicago.”

To learn more about the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and the Chicago Affiliate, visit www.pancan.org.

The Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts Launches the Hotel Industry’s First Fully Branded Jet

As it becomes even more increasingly difficult to stand out in the high-income, beyond luxury market, the sky is literally the new limit as the Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts group reimagine luxury hospitality with the introduction of the Four Seasons Jet, the industry’s first fully branded private jet experience.

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An idea of extending the famous Four Seasons hospitality and to reimagine the future of luxury hospitality lead the company to create private jet journeys that focused exclusively on stays at Four Seasons properties worldwide in 2012. Beginning in February 2015, the Four Seasons Jet will transport 52 guests on highly customized, bespoke journeys, offering discerning travelers a distinctly Four Seasons travel experience from the moment they book their trip. Four Seasons in-flight staff, including a dedicated on-board concierge, will coordinate with local Four Seasons concierges in each destination to ensure that the Four Seasons Private Jet Experience is nothing short of extraordinary.

With the words “Four Seasons” on the fuselage and the iconic Four Seasons logo on the tail, the completely retrofitted Boeing 757 will feature interiors and exterior design customized by the company’s team of design experts, setting the stage for a travel experience like no other.

Taking our legendary service to the skies is a natural extension of what we’ve been doing in our hotels for more than 50 years,” says Susan Helstab, Executive Vice President Marketing, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts. “The Four Seasons Jet showcases the unforgettable people and experiences that make Four Seasons unique. It speaks to our pioneering spirit and the aspirations of today’s modern luxury traveller in an imaginative new way.”

Guests can look forward to individually handcrafted leather flatbed seats, globally inspired cuisine and signature Four Seasons service – on board and on the ground. Global in-flight Wi-Fi keeps guests and staff connected, so that spa treatments, tee times, private excursions and more can be arranged “on the fly” to augment each thoughtfully planned itinerary. Travelers will also have access to exclusive experiences available only to Four Seasons Jet passengers.

Reservations aboard the new Four Seasons Jet are currently open for the following trips:

  • Around the World, February 2015 – Beginning in Los Angeles and concluding with a celebratory dinner in London, this 24-day, 9-destination journey explores dynamic cities, exotic islands, architectural wonders and awe-inspiring natural environments. Highlighted by an only-by-private-jet stop at the Taj Mahal, all accommodations will be at Four Seasons hotels and resorts.
  • Backstage with the Arts, April 2015 – In the company of like-minded travellers who share a passion for the arts, guests will visit six cities and spend 16 indulgent days filled with backstage visits to Europe’s most stunning museums, outstanding performances at Teatro alla Scala in Milan and the Estates Theatre in Prague, exquisite dinners and a private gala in the Pavlovsk Palace outside St. Petersburg.
  • Around the World, August 2015 – Epic is the word to describe this globe-circling expedition through nine destinations, including stays in three of the newest Four Seasons hotels, plus the brand’s very first safari lodge in the Serengeti.  From the Forbidden City in Beijing to the medina in Marrakech, the pristine waters of the Maldives to the excitement of the world’s largest fish market in Tokyo and a final, glittering dinner in New York, it will be 24 days no one will ever forget.

Each journey includes air travel and ground transportation, planned excursions, all meals throughout the trip and luxurious accommodations exclusively at Four Seasons.

The decision to offer one-of-a-kind trips aboard a custom-designed Four Seasons Jet reflects an understanding of our guests’ evolving needs and preferences,” continues Helstab. “It recognizes their desire to pair adventure and discovery with the luxury of a fully immersive Four Seasons experience.”

The Four Seasons Jet, including accompanying staff and crew, is also available for private charter. To learn more visit fourseasons.com/jet