The Real Deal New York

Famed Sony Building murals at risk

Artist Dorothea Rockburne says the Chetrit Group refuses to reveal its plans for her artworks

January 24, 2016 04:00PM

The Sony Building,

The Sony Building, Dorothea Rockburne and “Northern Sky”

As the former Sony Building prepares for a massive condo conversion, the fate of the art in the lobby hangs in the balance. Artist Dorothea Rockburne, whose chaos-theory-inspired art adorns the lobby, worries that her work could soon be destroyed.

“I’m heartbroken, absolutely heartbroken about it,” Rockburne told the New York Post. “It is a very major work.”

The two murals that currently hang in the lobby of the Midtown skyscraper are called “Northern Sky” and “Southern Sky.”

"Norther Sky" and "Southern Sky" by

“Norther Sky” and “Southern Sky” by Dorothea Rockburne

Two years ago, the Chetrit Group paid $1.1 billion for the property and filed plans to convert the upper floors to condos. Rockburne says since then, they have declined to say what will happen to her art. She hopes that the pieces will be donated to a museum.

Joseph Chetrit’s son, Jonathan Chetrit, told the Post that the company was in talks with Rockburne, but Rockburne says she hasn’t heard from him in two years. [NYP]Christopher Cameron