Two valuable and occasionally controversial pieces of public art in downtown Binghamton have received some special attention.

The sculptures at the Government Plaza on Hawley Street got a thorough cleaning Friday.

The pressure washing work was done by Monumenta Art Conservation and Finishing under contract from the state Office of General Services.

Abigail Mack cleaning the "Cono Tronco" sculpture on October 15, 2021. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Monumenta co-owner Abigail Mack and a company employee worked to remove dirt and debris from the "Cono Tronco" and "I-Beam" sculptures.

At one point, they discovered some mud wasps and a chicken bone inside "Cono Tronco" - which is Italian for "broken cone."

Sculptor Arnaldo Pomodoro was paid $75,000 by the state for the project about a half-century ago.

The signature of Arnaldo Pomodoro appears at the base of "Cono Tronco." (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

Artist and architect Masao Kinoshita received $205,000 for his work called "I-Beam."

A third sculpture - "Dawn's Column" by Louise Nevelson - had been located near Binghamton City Hall. It was removed last November because it needs repairs. Nevelson was paid $60,000 for that sculpture. It's now in storage.

State officials won't say what the three sculptures are worth, although people familiar with them say they now could be valued at a few million dollars.

Masao Kinoshita's "I-Beam" being pressure washed on October 15, 2021. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)
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Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph: bob@wnbf.com.

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