The Rosenthal Cube Is Back at Guild Hall

For more than 50 years, “Alamo,” Tony Rosenthal’s 15-foot-tall Cor-Ten steel sculpture that pivots on its axis, has been as much as part of its Astor Place neighborhood in Lower Manhattan as the Cooper Union. Indeed, after a three-month absence last summer for refurbishment, its return landed it on the cover of The New Yorker’s Nov. 6 issue, courtesy of a rendering by Jorge Colombo. 

Rosenthal’s “Cube 72,” a 90-inch-square, or half-size version of “Alamo,” was given by the artist to Guild Hall and installed in front of the building in 1972, the same year the artist moved to Springs with his first wife, Halina Kolowicz. 

“Cube 72” cropped up in The New York Times in July 1989 in connection with an article on East Hampton Village’s ban on outdoor displays of art within its historic district. When Guild Hall’s permits expired for the display of two other sculptures, one by William King and one by Albert Price, the village’s design review board invoked the ban.

However, because “Cube 72” had been in place before the historic district was delineated, it was not affected by the sanction. And there it remained, a Main Street landmark, until it was moved to Guild Hall’s sculpture garden. 

As of last week, however, “Cube 72” is once again tilting proudly in front of Guild Hall, thanks in large part to the efforts of Dave Petrie, the C.E.O. of Tony Rosenthal Art.

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