Renowned American sculptor Martin Puryear’s (American, b. 1941) "Big Bling," installed on May 16, 2016, will be on view in Madison Square Park through April 2, 2017. The temporary outdoor work, the thirty-third public art exhibition to be mounted by Mad. Sq. Art, the free contemporary art program of Madison Square Park Conservancy, is a multi-tier wood structure wrapped in fine chain link fence. A gold-leafed shackle is anchored near the top of the structure. At forty feet high, "Big Bling" achieves colossal scale and elicits a range of readings, stimulating diverse and profound interpretations of its meaning. The largest temporary outdoor sculpture Puryear has created, "Big Bling" is part animal form, part abstract sculpture, and part intellectual meditation. The artist's signature organic vocabulary appears in a graceful, sinewy outline and an ameboid form in the work's center. In use as a discrete public space since 1686, Madison Square Park officially opened as a public park in 1847, was re-landscaped by William Grant and Ignatz Pilat, Frederick Law Olmstead’s former assistant, in 1870, and flourished throughout the late 19th and most of the 20th century. By the late 20th century, however, historic Madison Square Park was neglected and crime-ridden. People walked around it instead of going inside, the sidewalks were cracked, and the horticulture neglected. In the late 1990s, members of the community undertook a complete capital restoration of the Park, raising $6 million for its reconstruction, completed in spring 2001. Madison Square Park Conservancy was then formed to care for and program the Park, and now funds 100% of park horticulture and cultural programs, as well as maintaining and operating the Park and Worth Square, a combined seven-acre public space, 365 days a year. Madison Square Park Conservancy’s mission is to protect, nurture, and enhance Madison Square Park, a dynamic seven-acre public green space, creating an environment that fosters moments of inspiration. As stewards, we engage the community through our beautiful gardens, inviting amenities, and world-class programming. We believe that in an urban setting everyone deserves access to a park that allows for recreation, respite, and reflection. More than 60,000 residents, office workers and visitors use the Park on a daily basis year-round, with a peak in usage from April through November. Our programs and exhibitions bring in visitors from all five boroughs of New York, across the United States, and abroad. The Conservancy maintains the Park as a safe, clean, and dynamic public space, treasured by the community for its beautiful horticulture, family-friendly atmosphere, and vibrant cultural programming.