Robotically carved DUMBO sculpture turns into Michelangelo tribute from bird’s-eye view

Posted at 7:32 PM, Nov 21, 2013
and last updated 2013-11-25 10:15:24-05

DUMBO (PIX11) — Squint hard enough at the art in Brooklyn and it just might feel like you’re in Florence.

A new sculpture called “Bird God Drone” in DUMBO captures the silhouette of one of Michelangelo’s greatest works, but you’ll need a bird’s eye view to get the full picture.

Tucked away at the base of the Brooklyn Bridge now sits a sculpture that might feel familiar to art connoisseurs, but most people walking through the borough have a tough time putting their finger on it.

Elizabeth Tadeo, of DUMBO, says it looks more “Like a pyramid, like something Egyptian . . . it looks like it symbolizes a religious thing or something.”

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Hornsby recorded video of his statue from above using a remote-operated drone.

And even though people can’t quite grasp it, they say they appreciate the new sculpture. But to fully appreciate “Bird God Drone” one really needs to experience it from a different perspective.

That’s why the artwork includes this video which is shot overhead by a drone with a camera.

So what’s the point? Artist Nick Hornby says it’s all about perspective.

“The idea of this famous sculpture being re-oriented upwards and fashioned into a Google marker type object – to ask questions about public space, public sculpture,” Hornby says.

Hornby says he liked contrasting the vastness of a bird’s-eye view with people watching on the small intimate screen of a smart phone.

He says he has future “drone works” planned as part of a series that he will debut next year, but some observers say they’d like to experience the drone’s point of view first hand.

“It’s quite original, it’s very nice.  It would be cool to have stairs so you could go up there and really have a look at the shape, see the beauty of the performance.”

And considering Michelangelo spent almost four years on a scaffold looking up to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, looking down on the tribute to the artists second most famous work seems to balance out nicely — even if it can only be seen by birds, God, and drones.