Public sculpture designed by artist Anslem Kiefer for the Rockefeller Center in New York. The piece weighs 6.5 tonnes, standing 7.5 metres tall with a 10 metre wingspan, and is entirely clad in lead.

Uraeus is a monumental outdoor sculpture designed by Anselm Keifer specifically for the Rockefeller Center in New York, where it was exhibited from May to July 2018. The piece is entirely clad in lead and combines several themes previously explored in Kiefer’s work – the winged lectern, serpent and discarded books offer historical and iconographic references to philosophy, culture and learning.

Eckersley O’Callaghan provided engineering design, technical specifications and construction detailing for the supporting subframe of the sculpture and for the baseplate and foundation of the New York installation. Using the artist’s sketches and models, we defined a subframe geometry, successively refining the structural profiles to accommodate the artist’s requirements, maintain the visual integrity of the work and ensure safety in the context of public access. We also sourced specialist steelworkers and materials to construct the full-scale subframe in stainless steel, providing supervision and quality control services during the fabrication phase.

The sculpture was built in France and designed for dismantling into two primary components for shipping to New York and transport to site. To allow erection of the sculpture at the Rockefeller, Fifth Avenue was closed to traffic for four hours; it was imperative that this operation went smoothly, so a full-scale trial erection was carried out in the artist’s studio prior to shipping.

Location
New York NY

Client
Ribotte - Atelier Anselm Kiefer

Artist
Anselm Kiefer