Thursday, September 25, 2014

JR Brings Ellis Island’s Abandoned Hospital to Life

JR Brings Ellis Island’s Abandoned Hospital to Life -

Their experience might have been forgotten, the photo buried with countless others in an archive. Instead, this black-and-white portrait has been revived, blown up to life-size and pasted across a broken window in the former Ellis Island Immigrant Hospital in New York harbor. Light streams through the children’s translucent faces, foliage visible beyond the crumbling building, which has been abandoned and off limits since 1954.

The image is part of a new installation, “Unframed — Ellis Island,” by the French artist JR, which brings this landmark building, its patients and staff members, to grainy but wrenching life. It is the first time in 60 years that the Ellis Island hospital has been open to the public. Tickets go on sale Thursday for guided tours that begin on Oct. 1.

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