New York Ave Sculpture Project

The New York Avenue Sculpture Project is the only public art space featuring changing installations of contemporary works by women artists in Washington, D.C.

The Sculpture Project illustrates the museum’s long-term commitment to the artistic beautification of New York Avenue, fostering a vibrant new identity for the neighborhood just east of the White House. Organized by NMWA, the project is a collaboration between the museum, the Downtown DC Business Improvement District (BID), the DC Office of Planning, and other local agencies.


The third installation of the Sculpture Project honors a pioneer among women artists. From September 27, 2014–September 27, 2015, five works by internationally renowned artist Magdalena Abakanowicz (b. 1930) are on view in the median of New York Avenue, NW, between 12th and 13th Streets. Abakanowicz’s monumental bronzes representing human figures and her dynamic stainless steel birds in flight exemplify universal issues: the power of nature, the force of destruction and the resiliency of hope.

Representatives from NMWA, the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, the National Capital Planning Commission, the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, the DowntownDC Business Improvement District, the District Department of Transportation, the DC Office of Planning, the Advisory Neighborhood Commission, local museums with outdoor sculpture programs, and public art experts make up the advisory board that selected the winning artist.

Artists Selected for Past New York Avenue Sculpture Project Installations

  • Magdalena Abakanowicz (September 27, 2014–September 27, 2015)
  • Chakaia Booker (March 8, 2012–April 27, 2014)
  • Niki de Saint Phalle (April 28–November 7, 2010, and March 26–October 30, 2011)

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New York Avenue Sculpture Project: Magdalena Abakanowicz is made possible with funding provided by the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Public Art Building Communities Grant Program; the Homer and Martha Gudelsky Family Foundation; and Medda Gudelsky.