The economy is melting, literally. On Wednesday, two artists installed a 1,500-pound (680 kilogram) ice sculpture carved to spell the word ‘Economy’ in Manhattan’s financial district.
The Main Street Meltdown was to remain in Foley Square until it melted — about 24 hours. By Wednesday evening, the ‘E’ and the ‘C’ had already thawed and vanished.
The wide stairs and row of pillars fronting the state Supreme Court building provide backdrop to the sculpture. “To see the word ‘economy’ melting down is representational of an extreme time,” artists Nora Ligorano and Marshall Reese said on their website.
The artists said the sculpture, which is 5 feet (1.52 meters) tall, 15 feet (4.6 meters) wide and sits on a pedestal, was installed on October 29 that marked the 79th anniversary of the day in 1929 when the stock market crashed, precipitating the Great
Earlier this month, painter and printmaker Laura Gilbert stood outside the New York Stock Exchange and handed over signed and numbered prints of her ‘Zero Dollar,’ which looks like a dollar bill except it has a zero in the place of a one. She said the artwork was a statement about “the destructive role of many financial institutions, inflation and the decline of US currency to the point of seeming worthlessness.”
‘Economy’ is the fourth in a series of political ice sculptures Ligorano and Reese have created. Earlier this year, they carved blocks into the word ‘Democracy’ and allowed them to melt during the Republican and Democratic conventions.