On Display, the Agonized Objects and Photos of 9/11 (Exhibit/N-Y Historical Society)





A rust-red I-beam from the World Trade Center. A battered landing gear. A melted ribbon of aluminum skin from the twin towers.

Hour by hour, working through the night in his studio in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, to forge elegant black steel mounts for these and other tortured artifacts from Sept. 11, 2001, the sculptor Richard Webber started “communing with them,” he recalled. In their presence, “you could almost hear what happened that day.”

Ultimately, he fashioned seemingly delicate mounts that supported these impossibly heavy objects of disaster for a forthcoming exhibition at the New-York Historical Society, “Here Is New York: Remembering 9/11.” It will be the city’s first major trade center retrospective, and opens next Tuesday, the sixth anniversary, and continues through Jan. 1.

The show includes more than 1,500 photographs documenting the tragedy and its aftermath, as well as 10 carefully chosen artifacts touched by history that exemplify the unimaginable. The show is, quite simply, the society’s memorial to those who died on Sept. 11, said Louise Mirrer, the society’s president.

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