I grew up surrounded by fields of sheep and cattle, but since moving to New York, the only animals I’ve seen are small dogs and bigger rats. Thankfully a new art space in Chelsea has brought the farmyard experience right to the heart of the city so that New Yorkers don’t miss out.
‘Sheep Station’ can be found at the old Getty gas station on the corner of 10th Avenue and 24th Street, which has been temporarily converted into a public art space. Standing on grassy mounds behind white picket fences and between retro gas pumps are lots and lots of sheep. They’re the creation of the late surrealist sculptor Francois-Xavier Lalanne, who wanted to capture and inspire joy with his work.
The show was conceived by an art dealer and a real estate developer who bought the Getty station over the summer. It will be turned into luxury residences but throughout the construction, the space will be used to present public art. When the apartments are done, similar art will be seen throughout the building.
I admired the animals, which are made from bronze and epoxy stone, for a while – and did my best to convince a toddler that they were real. It seems crazy to me that among the clattering diners and speeding cabs of Chelsea, someone thought to put a whole meadow here. It’s so cute and bizarre. I loved it.