Artist Kathleen Griffin is moving forward with plans to bring 17 giant butterflies to the top of the abandoned Smallpox Hospital on Roosevelt Island. The project, supposedly the third largest public art installation to ever land in New York City, is called "Butterflies of Memory," and it is planned for next summer. Griffin launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise $50,000 to help pay for the fabrication of the butterflies, which are made from steel and epoxy resin coated in gold leaf. They'll be 13-feet in diameter, rise 18 to 36 feet above the building, and be able to withstand winds of 100 miles per hour.
The entire cost of the installation is $1 million, and $265,000 has already been raised. A private donor has agreed to match each $50,000 raised by the Kickstarter campaign. After the installation, ten butterflies will be sold for $100,000 a pop (the same amount it costs to make one butterfly) to be permanently installed around the city. Click through for photos of the works in progress.
· The Butterflies of Memory [Kickstarter]
· 10-Foot-Long Butterflies to Fly Over Roosevelt Island [Curbed]