Tatzu Nishi's Discovering Columbus public art installation. The Japanese artist created a living room around Manhattan's Christopher Columbus statue that was erected in 1892 to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the explorer's journey to the Americas. Feel as you wish about the man, the monument has been an icon at Columbus Circle, just yards away from Central Park, and the fountained area serves as a little piece of repose as the traffic and crowds rush around you. Nishi's latest installation attempts to provide a more intimate perspective to a statue that has marked that spot for the last 120 years - or at least it would be if a stream of viewers weren't constantly marching into the room along with you.
As someone who's only rushed past the statue her whole life barely stopping to squint up into the sky for a better look at it, it was cool to see the marble piece from so close and in such a different environment. The column rises up through the wood floor and the room is built around it, but it's so seamless that it looks like someone cut off the statue and placed it on top of the table. We sat on the comfy couches just inches away from his feet pretending that we lived in a fancy home that could house such a giant art piece and provide such an amazing view of the city.