Dancing Horses in Grand Central

Public art is rarely this much fun. Mark your calendars, please!

Nick Cave - Grand CentralNick Cave is a lively, unpredictable performance artist and fabric sculptor who trained as a dancer with Alvin Ailey. Widely recognized for his wearable artworks—equal parts folk art and sophisticated funk—he performed at the U.S. State Department’s Art in Embassies fiftieth anniversary soiree this past November. Now he is bringing a herd of thirty rainbowed horses to graze in Vanderbilt Hall from March 25 through the 31st. If you are one of the 250,000 daily trekkers hurrying through the grandeur of the central hall, give yourself time to stay awhile with Cave’s whimsical troupe. It promises all the theatrical charm of the old Bread and Puppet Theater minus the Sixties-style hectoring. Equine therapy for commuters and tourists alike.

Nick Cave - Grand Central 2Do not forget to look up. Horses wander.

Cave’s performance is part of the schedule of events celebrating Grand Central’s centennial. The pageant becomes all the more endearing when you remember how close the city’s Beaux Arts treasure came to suffering the same demolition fervor that undid Penn Station—the original McKim, Mead and White building—and so much else in the 1960s.

Penn Station postcardNote : If you want to see more of those costumes Nick Cave calls Soundsuits , check in with Jack Shainman Gallery in Chelsea. This one, from an exhibition in 2009, is a needlework favorite:

Nick Cave - Soundsuits