Lucky Number 7: Celebrating 7 Years of New Art and New Ideas on The Bowery

To commemorate seven years of "new art and new ideas," the New Museum collaborated with The Principals to make the 2014 Holiday Gift Membership.

Combining the iconic silhouette of the museum with the lucky number seven, The Principals created a pinwheel with seven silver curls, each in the shape of the museum’s facade.

Pinwheels bring up a number of associations—childhood, whimsy, luck—and are also impressive as mechanical systems: it’s simple but it does its job very well. Combining the aesthetic and engineering aspects of this typically frivolous object, The Principals conceived of something lasting and imbued with meaning, transforming what started as a disposable childhood trinket into something that can be considered in a new light and cherished.

This pinwheel is especially unique, too: While regular pinwheels have eight leaves, The Principals designed one with seven, further customizing this pinwheel beyond its already specific silhouette. What is more, each pinwheel is handmade with custom manufactured leaves, individually die-cut and assembled.

Recently, the design studio has been drawn to pinwheels, using them for their massive installation Glory Wall, which took up the entire stage at MoMA PS1’s 2014 Summer Warm Up series. This provided the dynamic background, responsive to both light and air flow, for performers like Skrillex, Sophie, Avalon Emerson, and Benji B, among others.  

The material is same as The Principals’ installation Ancient Chaos at Sonos Studios in collaboration with Devonté Hynes (aka Blood Orange). Installations such as this and Glory Wall at PS1 are indicative of the studio’s fascination with reflective surfaces, fluid forms, and kinetic interaction.

This combination of aesthetic effects and mechanics references natural geometry and patterns, modern architecture, as well as the artist group Zero, Kinetic Art, and artists such as Dan Graham.

Only a limited number of Holiday Gift Membership Pinwheels were produced. Become a member by clicking here, before it's too late to have one of these inimitable objects for yourself!