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Old Apr 6, 2011, 1:15 PM   #1
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Default "Borders" at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, NYC

A friend tipped me about the display titled "Borders" at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza yesterday so I went there despite the rain. I took these photos -- tripod-mounted -- under an umbrella.

Which worked out I think. Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, billed as the "Gateway to the United Nations" because of the UN building just around the corner, is always IMO "too busy" for photography. I've been there to take pictures before and always my pictures looked cluttered or lacked color. There were just too many objects around a scene that it was hard to take a shot without these objects getting in the frame and distracting the viewer away from the main subject.

If you want to know what I mean, take a look at the photo in the plaza's website at http://www.hammarskjoldplaza.org/scu...nunn_2011.html. The photographer had to separate processing for the sculptures (perhaps through Photoshop layering) from the background to make them appear brighter. Otherwise, you might miss the sculptures altogether and wonder what you're looking at.

At least with yesterday's rain, people weren't around to add to the "busy-ness" when I took the shots.

Anyway, according to the plaza's website, the sculptures are by Icelandic artist Steinunn Thorarinsdottier. The display will run till September 2011.

#1) If not for the rain, this place would have been crowded. Taking pictures would not have been easy as the plaza's layout -- a straight and wide open pathway -- leaves no space in which a photographer might hide.

#2) An example of the plaza's "busy-ness" is the big "DO NOT FEED THE PIGEONS" sign (in caps, too). It has nothing to do with the meditating (or bowing) sculptures but is bound to attract the viewer's attention.

#3) Dag Hammarskjold Plaza is a place where rallies, activism, and maybe indoctrination against certain global turmoils with the UN Building as backdrop that, depending on the political climate, you may or may not agree with, regularly occur. So, if in case you're looking for some peace and quiet in a deep and profound sense, I'd say the "vibes" you'd find here would be mixed.


#4) Another object that adds to the plaza's "busy-ness" are the trash cans. I know trash cans are our friend but at least in NYC parks like Bryant Park and Central Park -- which the plaza's website blasts as "chronically inadequate funding of maintenance" -- they are well-designed and complement the park. Here, trash cans are, well, just trash cans.


#5) Another trash can -- just can't avoid them.


#6) Bright orange panels on the building steal this shot.

Thank you for looking. C&C welcome. These are not HDR -- these are single, slightly-underexposed shots processed with Topaz Adjust's "psychedelic" preset with the Details' sliders throttled down a bit but the "sharpen" slider maxed out at 400. Any suggestions on how to retake I will appreciate. If, on the other hand, you think that my shots are, um, already astounding, then I will appreciate that, too...

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Old Apr 6, 2011, 6:03 PM   #2
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I like #1 especially - good lead-in lines. Looks like a very interesting place.
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Old Apr 7, 2011, 3:38 PM   #3
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Thank you, banksy. For #1, I swear the statues were looking at each other when I took the picture...

It was no longer raining so I went back today and took more pictures.

#7) "I'm not gonna look... I'm not gonna look... I'm not gonna look..."


#8) "Say, those boots look mighty nice..."


#9) "Eww! Stupid bird..."
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Old Apr 9, 2011, 10:37 PM   #4
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Haha, well said.
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Old Apr 15, 2011, 7:52 AM   #5
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Thanks, banksy.

#10) "I don't think we've met..."


#11) "I appreciate the company but a coat rack I'm not..."
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