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The artwork at Rockefeller Center comes in every size, shape, color, and medium. From the very beginning the plan was to set the standard for public art in NYC. And it continues to do so today.

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A

  1. Mural

    Abolition of Bondage

    Jose Maria Sert
    North Corridor of 30 Rockefeller Plaza
    The first commission Jose Maria Sert received for Rockefeller Center was to paint four murals to decorate the ends of the elevator banks.
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  2. Mural

    Abolition of War

    Jose Maria Sert
    North Corridor of 30 Rockefeller Plaza
    The first commission Jose Maria Sert received for Rockefeller Center was to paint four murals to decorate the ends of the elevator banks.
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  3. Sculpture

    Acts from Vaudeville

    Rene Paul Chambellan
    Under marquee and above 1260 Avenue of the Americas entrance
    These six playful plaques under the marquee on the granite wall are both architectural decorations and introductions to the stage events ahead.
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  4. Mural

    American Progress

    Jose Maria Sert
    Main Lobby of 30 Rockefeller Plaza
    Born in Barcelona, Sert spent his adult life living in Paris and was internationally famous as a mural painter.
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  5. Carving

    Arms of England

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    Above 50th Street entrance of 620 Fifth Avenue
    Three gilded passant-gardant lions (passant means walking; gardant means looking out of the shield) reinforce the presence of the building’s primary tenant, the British monarchy.
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  6. Mural

    Art in Focus

    Multiple Artists
    Rockefeller Center
    Rockefeller Center in partnership with Art Production Fund will present a series of public art pop ups throughout the center. Taking place in unique and unexpected locations, the multidisciplinary program will showcase installations inspired by the New York City landscape and contemporary life.
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  7. Mural

    Art Sundae 2019

    Multiple Artists
    30 Rockefeller Plaza
    Art Sundae at Rockefeller Center in partnership with Art Production Fund
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  8. Carving

    Aspects of Mankind

    Gaston Lachaise
    1250 Avenue of the Americas
    These four allegorical stone carvings express ideal aspects of the development of modern civilization: Genius Seizing the Light of the Sun (the development of electricity and communications), The Conquest of Space and Gifts of Earth to Mankind (an acknowledgement of spirituality), and The Spirit of Progress (a reference to the bond between capitalism and the unions during the building of the Center).
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  9. Sculpture

    Atlas

    Lee Lawrie and Rene Paul Chambellan
    630 Fifth Avenue, Main entrance forecourt
    Atlas is a successful collaboration between two talented artists, Lee Lawrie, who conceived the idea and designed the figure, and Rene Chambellan, who modeled the heroic-sized statue from his sketch.
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B

  1. Mural

    Brangwyn's South Corridor

    Sir Frank Brangwyn
    South Corridor of the main lobby in 30 Rockefeller Plaza
    Sir Frank Brangwyn’s four South Corridor murals were commissioned to complement the murals by Jose Maria Sert in the north corridor, although most observers agree this aesthetic bond wasn’t achieved.
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C

  1. Sculpture

    Christmas Angels

    Valerie Clarebout
    Channel Gardens
    In winter the Channel Gardens fountains are turned off and the Center is decorated for the Christmas holidays.
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  2. Carving

    Columbia Greeting a Woman and Boatman Unfurling a Sail

    Lee Lawrie
    Above 19 West 50th Street Entrance
    These two panels are part of the three pieces Lee Lawrie created as an appeal for world peace.
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  3. Carving

    Commerce and Industry with a Caduceus

    Attilio Piccirilli
    Above the main entrance of 636 Fifth Avenue
    Located above the glass bas-relief Youth Leading Industry, this large polychrome-painted limestone cartouche shows two monumental-sized figures symbolizing the basic trades of the nation.
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  4. Mural

    Conquest of Disease

    Jose Maria Sert
    North Corridor of 30 Rockefeller Plaza
    The first commission Jose Maria Sert received for Rockefeller Center was to paint four murals to decorate the ends of the elevator banks.
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  5. Mural

    Contest

    Jose Maria Sert
    South stairway in the grand lobby of 30 Rockefeller Plaza
    Painted three years after Fraternity of Men, this work presents a far more pessimistic view of the world.
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  6. Carving

    Cornucopia of Plenty

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    10 West 51st Street
    This polychrome-painted stone carving depicts a messenger soaring from the clouds, emptying an overflowing horn onto the earth.
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D

  1. Sculpture

    Dance, Drama, and Song

    Hildreth M. Meiere
    Radio City Music Hall
    These three large stylized decorative plaques, placed high up on the south façade of Radio City Music Hall, represent the theater’s main activities.
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  2. Sculpture

    Dancing Figure

    William Zorach
    1260 Avenue of the Americas
    Dancing Figure, an over-life-size casting of a nude female figure resting on one knee, is a study of the rounded, full shapes and simplified forms that characterize Zorach’s work.
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E

  1. Sculpture

    Eve

    Gwen Creighton Lux
    First mezzanine near 50th Street staircase
    Defying easy categorization, this unconventional portrait of Eve is depicted from an evolutionary view.
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  2. Carving

    Exterior Elevator Door Panels

    Rene Paul Chambellan
    1270 Avenue of the Americas
    Radio City Music Hall designer Donald Deskey commissioned Chambellan, a highly talented architectural modeler and sculptor, to provide designs for the elevator doors, with the belief that every small detail and decorative element would help create the right atmosphere of escape and fantasy.
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F

  1. Sculpture

    Fountainhead Figures

    Rene Paul Chambellan
    East ends of the Six Pools in the Channel Gardens
    Amongst the greenery of the Channel Gardens are six fountainhead sculptures gushing broad streams of water.
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  2. Carving

    Four Continents

    Leo Lentelli
    636 Fifth Avenue sixth floor facade
    Leo Lentelli’s allegorical carvings of Asia, Europe, Africa and The Americas not only reflect the range of international businesses within the building, but also communicate the vastness and history of the continents
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  3. Carving

    Four Periods In Italian History

    Leo Lentelli
    626 Fifth Avenue
    These stone carvings represent four eras in Italy’s history. They begin with The Roman Period, represented by the letters S.P.Q.R. (“The Senate and People of Rome”) and a Roman warrior.
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  4. Mural

    Fraternity of Men

    Jose Maria Sert
    North stairway in the grand lobby of 30 Rockefeller Plaza
    Sert expresses an optimistic view in this mural, painted at a time when Europe was on the verge of war.
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  5. Sculpture

    Frieze Sculpture

    Multiple Artists
    30 Rockefeller Plaza
    Frieze Sculpture is a major public art initiative, presented at Rockefeller Center in partnership with Frieze New York and Tishman Speyer.
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G

  1. Sculpture

    Gallic Freedom

    Alfred Janniot
    Above the main entrance of 610 Fifth Avenue
    Perched above the entrance of La Maison Francaise, this massive, majestic figure is symbolic of French freedom as she proclaims Liberte, Egalite, Fraternite (Liberty, Equality, Fraternity) to the world.
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  2. Sculpture

    Girl And Goose

    Robert Laurent
    First mezzanine
    This cast aluminum statue is one of three nudes that, amazingly, created a controversy when it was first installed.
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I

  1. Sculpture

    Industries of the British Empire

    Carl Paul Jennewein
    Above 620 Fifth Avenue entrance
    The nine gilded allegorical figures on this large bronze panel represent industries that were once considered major sources of income for the British.
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  2. Carving

    Industry and Agriculture

    Carl Paul Jennewein
    1 Rockefeller Plaza main entrance
    These two heroic-sized carvings represent the commercial activities of industry and agriculture, depicting universal activities, not individuals.
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  3. Mosaic

    Intelligence Awakening Mankind

    Barry Faulkner
    1250 Avenue of the Americas
    This mosaic of small glass tiles (tesserae) is composed of over one million glass tiles in two hundred and fifty colors, each hand-cut and hand-set.
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  4. Sculpture

    Italia

    Giacomo Manzu
    Above 626 Fifth Avenue entrance
    During the Second World War, a bas-relief with an undesirable fascist theme was removed from the prominent 626 Fifth Avenue entrance. Twenty years later, in 1965, a group of prominent Italian businessmen presented Rockefeller Center with this plaque as a symbol of Italy and Italian-Americans.
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L

  1. Sculpture

    Light and Movement

    Michio Ihara
    On the main lobby north and south walls of 630 Fifth Avenue
    Nelson Rockefeller, a great patron of modern art, commissioned this sculpture in 1978 to update and enhance the lobby area of the International Building.
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M

  1. Sculpture

    Mankind Figures (Maiden and Youth)

    Paul Manship
    Flanking the staircase to the Lower Plaza
    Manship created these heroic-sized figures in 1933 to flank the golden Titan Prometheus.
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  2. Carving

    Morning, Present, Evening

    Robert Garrison
    Above 1270 Avenue of the Americas entrance
    This was the first work of art commissioned for Rockefeller Center and ultimately set the stage for its renowned Art Deco style.
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  3. Carving

    Motifs from the Coats of Arms of The British Isles

    Rene Paul Chambellan
    Fifth Avenue facade sixth-floor spandrels of 620 Fifth Avenue
    For this series of carvings, Chambellan borrowed motifs from the coats of arms of England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland—the four countries that make up the British Isles.
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N

  1. Sculpture

    News

    Isamu Noguchi
    Above 50 Rockefeller Plaza main entrance
    Soaring above the entrance to 50 Rockefeller Plaza, this dynamic plaque symbolizes the business of the building’s former tenant, the Associated Press.
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P

  1. Carving

    Pageant of French History

    Rene Paul Chambellan
    Sixth floor spandrels of the 610 Fifth Avenue Facade
    Symbols from four significant events in France’s history illustrate the themes of A Pageant of French History.
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  2. Mural

    Panther Mural

    Jenry Billings
    Third floor ladies' powder room, Radio City Music Hall
    This decorative, enigmatic work, on display in the ladies room, stylistically moves away from Art Deco and toward Surrealism, where dreams and unreality were key themes.
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  3. Carving

    Progress

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    Above 49th Street entrance
    A true icon of the Art Deco style, this bas-relief is allegorical, has bold and flat geometric shapes, strong colors and stylized forms, and, above all, is decorative.
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  4. Sculpture

    Prometheus

    Paul Manship
    Above Lower Plaza
    Prometheus is said to be the best-known sculpture in Rockefeller Center and the most photographed monumental sculpture in all of NYC.
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R

  1. Carving

    Radio

    Leo Friedlander
    Above 50 Rockefeller Plaza main entrance
    A native New Yorker, Leo Friedlander studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Brussels and Paris and was awarded the Prix de Rome in 1913.
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S

  1. Carving

    Saint Francis of Assisi with Birds

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    Above 9 West 50th Street entrance of 630 Fifth Avenue
    The figure of Saint Francis symbolizes love of self and neighbor.
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  2. Carving

    Seeds of Good Citizenship

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    Above Channel Gardens Entrance of La Maison Francaise
    Pure Art Deco, this panel features an allegorical gilded female figure sowing seeds in the form of a stylized fleur-de-lis, the symbolic flower of France.
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  3. Carving

    Sound and Light

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    Above 30 Rockefeller Plaza main entrance
    Sound and Light are located to the left and right sides of Lawrie’s celebrated Wisdom.
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  4. Mural

    Spirit of Dance

    Jose Maria Sert
    North Hall of 30 Rockefeller Plaza
    As Sert’s submission for the main-lobby mural, American Progress, did not wrap the corners of the wall, he was asked to provide two additional murals for these walls.
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  5. Carving

    Swords Into Plowshares

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    19 West 50th Street entrance of 630 Fifth Avenue
    This panel is one unit of the three-part work Lee Lawrie created as an appeal for world peace.
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T

  1. Carving

    Television

    Leo Friedlander
    Above 49th Street entrance
    A native New Yorker, Leo Friedlander studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Brussels and Paris and was awarded the Prix de Rome in 1913.
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  2. Mural

    The Fountain Of Youth

    Ezra A. Winter
    Main staircase from grand foyer to first mezzanine, Radio City Music Hall
    This enormous mural sweeps up the staircase and overlooks spectacular grand foyer (a space created by the architect Edward Durrell Stone).
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  3. Mural

    The History of Transportation

    Dean Cornwell
    10 Rockefeller Plaza main lobby
    With major commercial air travel taking off after World War II, Dean Cornwell was commissioned to create a mural depicting the advances of transportation.
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  4. Sculpture

    The Immigrant

    Giacomo Manzu
    Near West 50th Street entrance of 626 Fifth Avenue
    The companion work to the large panel titled Italia, this bas-relief is a poignant work depicting a weary barefoot mother and her naked child, the fundamental nature of poverty.
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  5. Carving

    The Joy of Life

    Attilio Piccirilli
    Above 48th Street entrance
    John D. Rockefeller, the developer of the Center, was a reserved man who advocated temperance, yet this carving portrays the “joy” of life as wine.
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  6. Mural

    The Phantasmagoria Of The Theater

    Louis Bouche
    Walls of the main lounge of Radio City Music Hall
    When Bouche was commissioned to paint a series of vignettes to represent various theatrical scenes for the walls of the main lounge, he chose five eras as the focus for his lively narrative.
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  7. Carving

    The Story of Mankind

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    Above 29 West 50th Street entrance of 630 Fifth Avenue
    The Story of Mankind is a massive carved limestone screen divided into fifteen small rectangular spaces that Lawrie termed “hieroglyphs”.
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  8. Mural

    Time

    Jose Maria Sert
    Main Lobby of 30 Rockefeller Plaza
    This dramatic ceiling mural depicts heroic-sized, Titans who symbolize the three aspects of time: Past, Present and Future.
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  9. Carving

    To Commemorate The Workmen of The Center

    Gaston Lachaise
    Above 45 Rockefeller Plaza Entrance
    After immigrating to America, Gaston Lachaise abandoned his European academic training and began his own artistic explorations, favoring celebrations of the human body.
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W

  1. Carving

    Winged Mercury

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    Above Channel Gardens Entrance of 620 Fifth Avenue
    The Roman god Mercury has been used to symbolize Britain’s worldwide strength in the 1930s, and here the gilded figure is depicted on a mission, rapidly flying over blue-green waves.
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  2. Carving

    Wisdom

    Lee Lawrie with colorist Leon V. Solon
    Above 30 Rockefeller Plaza main entrance
    An Art Deco icon, Wisdom famously looms over the entrance to the main building of Rockefeller Center and can be seen from Fifth Avenue.
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Y

  1. Carving

    Youth Leading Industry

    Attilio Piccirilli
    Above the main entrance of 636 Fifth Avenue
    This bas-relief was cast to capture the energy of a modern future emerging in Italy.
    LEARN MORE

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