The Met 3-D Scanned Three Suits of Armor for an Icelandic Artist’s Public Art Show at the Cloisters

artnet News | Sarah Cascone

Visitors to New York’s Cloisters just might meet their knight in shining armor this summer. A new public art installation from Icelandic artist Steinunn Thorarinsdottir is bringing life-size copies of real suits of armor from the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Medieval collection to the Cloisters Lawn in Fort Tryon Park. To create the sculptures, the artist teamed up with the Met’s Advanced Imaging Department to create 3-D scans of three suits of armor from the collection. First, the suits were 3-D printed, then reproduced in cast aluminum by a foundry in China using the lost wax method—an impressive blend of modern-day technology and age-old techniques.

The idea for the project came to Thorarinsdottir about five years ago during an extended stay in New York, when she developed a fascination with the arms and armor department at the Met. “I started to think about how to incorporate armor into my figurative visual work,” the artist told artnet News at the show’s opening reception. Each armored statue faces off with an androgynous figure, a recurring motif in Thorarinsdottir’s work. They are cast using bandage molds from the body of her son, who has doubled as her model since 1997. For each of the three sculptural pairs, he stood the same way the suit of armor was posed, mimicking the Medieval warrior’s frozen stance…read more

Image: Steinunn Thorarinsdottir, “ARMORS” at Fort Tryon Park. Photo by Azhar Kotadia.