The Office for Creative Research has been announced as the winners of the 2017 Times Square Valentine Heart Design Competition. Their winning design, titled We Were Strangers Once Too, is a public data sculpture in the shape of a heart that “highlight[s] the role that immigrants have played in the founding, development, and continued vibrancy of New York City.”
The design comprises 33 colored metal poles that create a visual representation of data from the 2015 American Census Survey outlining the origins and shifting populations of foreign-born NYC residents. As visitors travel around the sculpture to a designated observation point, their perspective will line the poles up to create an iconic heart shape.
“Conceived as both a striking visual object and as a point of dialogue and conversation, We Were Strangers Once Too champions the value of diversity in the city, and specifically the city's immigrant populations, new and old, at a time when they are increasingly under siege,” said competition-organizer Times Square Arts.
“Now more than ever New Yorkers need to stand up and say we are proud to live in a city of immigrants,” explained The Office for Creative Research. “We Were Strangers Once Too is our way to acknowledge and say thank you to the diverse communities of NYC for their many contributions historically, currently and into the future.”
Other invited finalists for the 2017 Times Square Valentine Heart Design included: AWED Alan Waxman Ecosocial Design, Ekene Ijeoma, Future Firm with Andrew Heumann, Jaklitsch / Gardner Architects, McEwen Studio | V. Mitch McEwen, Partner & Partners with Annie Barrett, and Young New Yorkers. This year’s competition was curated by the Urban Design Forum.
This is the 10th edition of the Times Square Valentine Heart Design Competition. Previous winners have included: Collective-LOK (2016); Stereotank (2015); Young Projects (2014); Situ Studio (2013); BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group) (2012); Freecell (2011); Moorhead & Moorhead (2010); and Gage / Clemenceau Architects (2009).
The sculpture will be unveiled on February 7, and will be displayed throughout the month at Father Duffy Square, between 46th and 47th Streets adjacent to the TKTS booth and the Red Steps.
Visitors are invited to use the hashtag #oncestrangersTSq to share their experiences on social media.
News via Times Square Arts.