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Pandemic-Delayed Public Art Display Finally Blooms Along Broadway

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- An art installation is brightening one of Manhattan's busiest blocks.

A Broadway debut blossoms for sculptor Jon Isherwood.

Along the famous street, in eight locations between West 157th and West 64th streets, are sculptures he carved out of seven kinds of marble.

"Broadway, that is your exhibit space. How is that?" CBS2's Dave Carlin asked.

"It's magnificent," Isherwood said. "It's just magical. It's a perfect location and that it's truly in the public."

The exhibit is called Broadway Blooms.

"It's just lovely to look at," one woman said.

"It's a good thing. It's new," one man said.

"I love public art. New York should have more of it," another woman said.

One sculpture in front of Lincoln Center was inspired by the flower-filled final moments of a performance.

"The gesture of throwing the bouquet onto the stage and just seeing that moment where it lays out and it just sits there, and it's just, you know, it's such a beautiful gesture," Isherwood said.

One outside the 72nd Street subway station invites up-close interaction.

"There are two flowers that intersect, and you can sit [on] either side of them, so that there's sort of hopefully this wonderful gesture where you can actually sit amongst the flower forms and maybe have a dialogue with another person," Isherwood said.

Getting the sculpture show together was tough. The pandemic delayed shipment and installation by more than a year.

"It just kind of held everything up," Isherwood said.

"While he lives here, his pieces are made in Italy, so it just really laid bare for us the challenges of mounting these kinds of programs," said Emily Walker, executive director of the Broadway Mall Association.

The Broadway Mall Association sponsors the exhibit, which is the group's 13th public art show.

"We are so thrilled that they're finally here. It was worth the wait," Walker said.

The eight gifts to New York City are designed to be tough and lasting, just like the city they are in.

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