When construction got underway for the new, temporary installation that will stand around the Christopher Columbus statue in Columbus Circle, media outlets were trying to find some outraged Italian Americans to comment on it—but little had luck. Now the NY Post has tracked some down, however, and they say Italian-American activists think the installation shows little respect for Columbus (who always respected others).
The installation is by Japanese artist Tatzu Nishi, and will give New Yorkers a new look at the statue, from a living room being built around it. When it closes in November, it will serve as a functional platform that will allow workers to restore the statue. So what's the problem? One man told the paper, "Christopher Columbus is turned into some clownish figure in the middle of the room that many visitors are sure to find amusing—[it’s a] fun-house view of Christopher Columbus." Another calls it "an abomination," and another says "Erecting this living room set around the statue demeans the community."
Click through for a look at the installation as seen this morning, during its construction phase—here's what it will look like when complete.