This Summer we’ve had a plethora of exciting art installations in all five boroughs. Playful, colorful, interactive, life-like, thoughtful and thought-provoking. We’ve been treated to art in public spaces and parks that have never had art before. Here’s what’s new in August, along with other installations in the city that are still up this month:
35. “Slide the City” Arriving for Summer Streets 2015 This Month
Each year, on three consecutive Saturdays in August, New York City closes seven miles of Park Avenue to traffic, and more than 300,000 people take advantage of the open space and all the activities associated with Summer Streets. This year, “Slide the City” will be part of Summer Streets. The Vita Coco Beach, a 270-foot water slide will be located at Foley Square, which is at Centre Street and Lafayette Street. Advance registration is required and already closed for this Saturday, August 1st. But registration for August 8th begins on the 3rd.
The Summer Streets dates are August 1, 8 and 15, from 7 am to 1 pm. In addition to “Slide the City”, Summer Streets has a plethora of other activities. Check out our guide for what to do at each of the Summer Street stops this year.
34. In Search of the Truth, The Truth Booth in Brooklyn
Image via Jinwoo Chong for Untapped Cities
Arriving in Brooklyn on August 4th, The Truth Booth is a twenty-five foot tall, four-hundred pound art installation in the shape of a thought bubble. When you enter the booth, you will be invited to record for two minutes on how you would end the statement “The truth is…..” What you say will not only be recorded, but will also become part of a public video response, that in turn will be edited into a video artwork.
The Truth Booth began as a public installation in Ireland in 2011, and has traveled the Globe since then, including such places as Art Basel Miami and Burning Man. Artists Ryan Alexiev, Jim Ricks and Hank Willis Thomas (Cause Collective) hope to use this installation as a way to show innovative cross-cultural communication. This installation, presented by The Public Art Fund and Barclays Center developer Forest City Ratner, will also include three new pieces by artist Hank Willis Thomas. One will feature speech bubble-shaped signs hung at Metro Tech Commons and benches shaped like hallow speech bubbles, with open space in the center for seating. You will also find a tree sculpture with speech bubble leaves hanging from branches.
The Truth Booth has already recorded nearly 5,000 visitors’ responses. You will find this installation at Metro Tech Commons, with pop-up appearances at two other Downtown Brooklyn locations as the year progresses. Brooklyn will have the installation throught June of 2016 and you can follow The Truth Booth on Facebook.
33. Pier 42 Attracts Three Art Installations This Summer
Pier 42 has three new art installations by three different art groups, on view through October. Combo Colab, Drumreef Watercycle is an installation that displays their interest in repurposing and recycling existing resources. Made from multiple re-purposed rain barrels, the installation provides shade and seating. They also incorporate water features, including rain water collection and pedal-powered water pump for cooling and irrigation. The Leroy Street Studio installation, Water’s Edge Canopy, incorporates shade and seating as a community outdoor gathering space to be used for classes and workshops. Chat Travieso, a teaching artist at Hester Street Collaborative, along with University Neighborhood High School students, built a shaded seating area out of used wooden wine crates. The boxes can function as stepped seating, climbing areas, tables or wherever your imagine can take them. All three installations will be on view through October 25, 2015.
32. Hanna Liden Brings “Everything” to Greenwich Village
“Everything” by Anna Liden located at Hudson River Park
The Art Production Fund and Kiehl’s have brought a uniquely New York installation to two public spaces. Hanna Liden‘s sculptures entitled “Everything” is a stack of larger-than-life bagels at Hudson River Park and the Ruth Wittenberg Plaza where Greenwich Avenue meets Avenue of the Americas. The Swedish-born artist has made New York her home since 1998. Her installations at Hudson River Park will be on view through October 20, 2015, and the installation at the Ruth Wittenberg Plaza through August 24, 2015.
“Everything” by Hanna Linden located at the Ruth Wittenberg Plaza
31. Seward Johnson’s 18 Life-Size Sculptures Bring Life to The Garment District Plazas
This wonderful new installation entitled “Seward Johnson in New York” brings to the Garment District Plaza eighteen life-size sculptures from 36th Street to 41st Street on Broadway. The colorful bronze sculptures were selected from three of his collections and will remain on view through September 15th. New Yorker’s and Tourists are having lots of fun taking photos with, and dining along side Mr. Johnson’s artistic creations that are, as he put it, an “imitation of life.”
30. The Dance in Staten Island’s Tappen Park
DB Lampman, known for her large-scale sculptural installations, and heavily influenced by her years as a professional ballet dancer, has created “The Dance” in the borough where she lives – Staten Island. The Dance consists of five figures floating fifteen feet above the ground. Named after the Henri Matisse painting by the same name, they are crafted from fabric-covered steel made in the OS Staten Island Makerspace.
The piece originated as a creative effort to band her community together after all the loss Staten Island incurred during Hurricane Sandy. Thus, the piece symbolizes the banding together of figures that by night, are illuminated with colored LED lights. Installed in September of last year, The Dance is located in Tappen Park, Canal Street and Wright Street, and will remain on display through September 14, 2015.
29. “Parallel Connection” by OSGEMOES at Times Square Midnight Moment
What better place to bring these iconic animated characters than Times Square. The Brazilian artist duo, brothers Gustavo and Otavio Gandolfo, known as OSGEMEOS, will be part of Times Square’s Midnight Moment, which is a monthly presentation by The Times Square Advertising Coalition (TSAC) and Times Square Arts. This will be the largest coordinated effort in history by the sign operators in Times Square, to display synchronized content on electronic billboards and newspaper kiosks through Times Square every night. Midnight Moment will take place beginning August 1 through August 30th every night from 11:57 pm to Midnight.
28. The “Pacific Park Brooklyn” Project will be Surrounded by Art
The Atlantic Yards project, now known as Pacific Park Brooklyn has tapped the talents of local artist, Mike Perry to curate the painting of an 820-foot canvas consisting of ten murals that will cover a part of the 22-acre construction site. The project will feature ten artists, each working on a canvas of 10 x 40 that will be painted on one day – August 15, during a street fair. The murals will be located at the Pacific Park Brooklyn construction site, between Vanderbilt Avenue and Carlton Avenue, and are expected to be up for at least three years.
27. Brooklyn Bridge Park Invites You To Please Touch the Art
Brooklyn Bridge Park in coordination with the Public Art Fund and artist Jeppe Hein have installed a very popular three-part project this summer. Running the 1.3 mile length of the Brooklyn Bridge Park, Please Touch The Art invites to you to run through, sit on and walk around arched benches, mirrored panels and rooms of rising water through April 17, 2016.
26. The Popular Boogie Down Booth is Back in The Bronx
Boogie Down Booth photo via WHEDco
Back by popular demand, The Boogie Down Booth first launched in the Bronx as a pop-up in July 2014 as part of Under the Elevated, a project of the Design Trust for Public Space in partnership with the NYC Department of Transportation and in collaboration with WHEDco. Design Trust Fellows Chat Travieso and Neil Donnelly constructed a temporary installation at the corner of Freeman Street and Southern Boulevard, directly below the 2/5 subway at a busy bus stop and right down the street from the BMHC Lab. The first Boogie Down Booth included seating, LED lighting, and directional speakers that played Bronx Music 24/7—all powered by solar panels.
It was so successful, that WHEDco brought the concept back to the Bronx again this year. Designed to celebrate the rich culture of the Bronx expressed through music and art, you will find the colorful installation as an interactive place to sit, with artwork by local artists, and speakers streaming music by Bronx artists. The playlist is curated by the Bronx Music Heritage Center. The installation is designed again by Chat Travieso, who also has an installation up at Pier 42.
You will find the Boogie Down Booth along the fence at Malcolm Pinckney Seabury Park, Southern Boulevard and 174th Street. This project was done in partnership with NYC Parks and Whedco’s Bronx Music Heritage Center. The installation will be up through July 2016.
25. The Long Awaited SeaGlass Carousel Will Launch This Month
The much anticipated SeaGlass Carousel at The Battery will open as a major attraction on August 20th. The carousel boasts thirty luminescent fish figures as large as 9.5 feet wide and 13.5 feet tall. The SeaGlass Carousel will be open daily to the public from 10 am to 10 pm. Admission is $5 per ride. This project and the surrounding Woodland Gardens are part of The Battery Conservancy plan to reinvigorate the park.
24. Mobile Art Gallery Trailer in Flushing Meadows Corona Park
The Queens Museum at Flushing Meadows Corona Park and ArtBuilt Mobile Studios are behind artist Matthew Jensen’s 150 square foot gallery entitled “A Collection of Walks”. Mapping out 14 different routes to the Unisphere from 14 landmarks scattered throughout New York City, Jensen will walk the entire way, picking up whatever he finds and display them in this tiny gallery. His goal is for the gallery to become a “cabinet of curiosities,” filled with the items of the city’s streets and pathways. You can find the mobile art gallery not far from the New York State Pavilion, across the flower gardens from the Unisphere. “Studio in the Park” will be on through August 16th.
23. Governors Island – Figment Summer Programs Arrive and Holocenter Sets Up a Summer Museum
The Billion Oyster Pavilion
Figment NYC hosts a number of summer-long programs on Governors Island through September. This year will include a sculpture program and a mini golf course. Also on display from City of Dreams is the Billion Oyster Pavilion from BanG Studios and Organic Growth, an installation made of discarded umbrellas, stools and old bicycle wheels.
Also on Governors Island, The Holocenter Summer Museum has been open each weekend since July at The Nolan Park house and gallery, and will remain on display through September 28th from noon to 6 pm. Of particular interest, “Art for Time Travelers: a 4D Video Sculpture of the Lower Manhattan Shoreline through Time.” This installation is derived from a film that will premiere in early 2016. Also on tap for August will be the third Stereoscopic Camera Obscura by Jose Vargas whereby the outside world is overlaid as a 3D projection.
22. Don Gummer Sculptures on The Broadway Mall With
The Broadway Mall Association, NYC Parks and the Morrison Gallery of Kent, Connecticut have installed nine aluminum and stainless steel sculptures by artist Don Gummer, the other half of actress Meryl Streep, to Broadway from 59th Street to 157th Street. This is the artist’s first outdoor public art exhibition in New York City. Gummer on Broadway will be on view through October, 2015.
21. “Caesura: a forum” at Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem
Marcus Garvey Park has been buzzing with activity, between The Classical Theatre of Harlem‘s free performances of The Tempest, Jazzmobile’s Free Summer Series of Concerts, the recent House Tour, the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival later this month, and the removal of the historic Harlem Fire Watchtower for renovation. Inspired by the watchtower and the community involvement surrounding it, artist Jessica Feldman and architects Jerome W. Haferd and K. Brandt Knapp created a piece that they hope will fill the architectural gap, inviting the community back to the Acropolis to enjoy the installation, the beauty of the space, and hear the sound component, which is a mirrored steel plate that emits sounds composed of the reverberations of bells and voices. Caesura: a forum will be on the Acropolis in Marcus Garvey Park through October 31, 2015. The DNA Totem, is scheduled to follow in 2016.
20. “Image Objects” in City Hall Park
Amanda Ross-Ho’s installation at City Hall Park as part of “Image Objects”
Seven international artists explore the rapidly evolving relationship between digital technology and our physical space in the installation “Image Objects.” Located in City Hall Park, this installation is presented to us by the Public Art Fund. Curated by Andria Hickey, the installation in on view through November 20, 2015.
19. Art Students League Sculptures in Riverside Park South and Van Cortlandt Park
The Art Students League is now in their fifth year of the program Model to Monument (M2M), in partnership with the NYC Parks along Hudson River South. This year they placed seven monumental sculptures with the theme “Patterns of Nature” along the Hudson River from 59th Street to 72nd Street, and in one in Van Cortlandt Park. The Riverside Park South installations will be up through May 15, 2016 and Van Cortlandt Park through June 10, 2016.
18. The Oracle of the Past, Present and Future” in Tompkins Square Park
“The Oracle of the Past, Present and Future” by artist Jorge Luis Rodriguez was unveiled in June in Tompkins Square Park. The work, inspired by the study of celestial bodies and influences of the sun, moon and planets, hopes to engage the public in contemplation and inner reflection. Also last month, Mr. Rodriguez had four pieces installed in the East Harlem Art Park. The Oracle will be on view through May 1, 2016.
17. Percent for Art Program Installed Four New Sculptures in Celebration of Their 30th Year
From left to right, Birdhouse; Hummingbird, Fish Spine and Palenque by artist Jorge Luis Rodriguez
Celebrating their 30th Anniversary, the Percent for Art Program installed four new sculptures by the same artist that created the first piece for the program in this very same park thirty years ago. The artist, Jorge Luis Rodriguez was in the park for the celebration and ribbon cutting, alongside his first piece, “Growth” which was dedicated in 1985.
16. Desire Lines in Central Park
Measuring each and every pathway in Central Park, the artist, Tatiana Trouve’ created a corresponding wooden spool, and color for each pathway. In total, there are 212 spools that correspond with an interactive map. This large, colorful installation sits on the Doris C. Freedman Plaza on Fifth Avenue and 60th Street – at Central Park’s front door. Desire Lines will be on view through August 30th and has been presented by the Public Art Fund.
15. Socrates Sculpture Park Has Five Exhibits Through August 30
Five artists have been exhibiting at Socrates Sculpture Park this summer. Agnes Denes “The Living Pyramid” has brought the thousands of seeds she planted in May to life. In “Torqueing Spheres”, the 2015 Folly Program winner, IK Studio transforms a series of intertwining, sculpted forms. Vera Lutter, previously seen in a recent solo exhibit at Gagosian Gallery created a billboard image that spans the width of the main entrance of the park. Named “Broadway Billboard”, the work is 11′ x 28′ and can be seen nearly a mile away. “Suspect Terrain” by Heide Fashacht details the creation and aftermath of a sinkhole, with her installation rising fifty-feet above ground and Gabriela Albergaria magnifies nature in her installation “Two Trees in Balance” with the dozens of branches and tree stumps collected and suspended diagonally from a steel cable. All five installations will be on view until August 30th.
14. Santiago Calatrava’s Sculputres on the Park Avenue Mall
S4, Painted plate aluminum
Through the NYC Parks and The Fund for Park Avenue, the Marlborough Gallery has brought us seven Santiago Calatrava sculptures along the Park Avenue Mall. The sculptures range in size, with the tallest piece standing eighteen feet. The installations run from 57th Street to 52nd Street, where you will also find Urs Fischer’s Big Clay #4 on the Seagram Building Plaza. The seven sculptures will be on display through mid-November, 2015.
13. “Fata Morgana” Reflects the Colors of Summer In Madison Square Park
This 500-foot canopy of mirror-polished discs above the pathways around Madison Square Park has delighted visitors, mirroring the ever changing colors of the Summer landscape. Fata Morgana by artist Teresita Fernandez beautifully utilizes the foliage and light, occupying nine-percent of the park. Since the installation will be up through January 10, 2016, we have two more seasons to reflect on.
12. “Panorama” on The High Line
Ryan Gander’s marble fountain is a visage of his wife
The High Line‘s current eleven-artist exhibition, Panorama is about vistas and vantage points running from the new stretch of The High Line at Hudson Yards to the new Museum on the block, The Whitney at Gansevoort Street. Check out a full recap of the sculpture you can see in Panorama, up through March 2016.
11. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Roof Garden by Pierre Huyghe
Set against the sprawling scape of Central Park, the Metropolitan Museum of Art‘s Roof Garden Commission this season is meant to explore the transformation of cultural and biological systems through the gathering of components from the Museum’s own collection. No stranger to the MET or to this art form, Pierre Huyghe’s installation has no set floor plan, as visitors roam the zen-garden, overturned stone slabs, with a water tank set on a pedestal as if part of the City view. Weather permitting, the Roof Garden and installation will be on view through November 1, 2015.
10. The Hello Kitty “Time After Time Capsule” at the Dag Hammerskjold Plaza
The Hello Kitty sculpture is among several launched last year and placed in cities all around the world. The artist, Sebastian Masuda hopes to fill each one with “objects and feelings uniquely personalized by each individual”, or what he calls “kawaii”. This particular sculpture now graces the Dag Hammerskjold Plaza on East 47th Street. All the sculptures will be collected and displayed in a single large-scale exhibition at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. Our Hello Kitty Time After Time Capsule will be on display through September 13, 2015.
9. Frida Kahlo Studio Installation at The New York Botanical Garden
Frida Kahlo Art Garden Life has been a rare display of more than a dozen original paintings and works on paper, as well as a re-creation of Casa Azul, the artist’s garden and studio in Mexico City. The exhibit, located at the New York Botanical Garden, will be on through November 1, 2015. If you would like to see more on the life of Frida, the Throckmorton Fine Art Gallery currently has an exhibit of photographs by twenty renowned photographers. They are located at 145 East 57th Street and this wonderful exhibit will be on through September 12th.
8. “Fat Boy” Graces the Lawn in Prospect Park
Standing 9.5 feet tall, and with a width of 8.5 feet, Leonard Ursachi’s “Fat Boy” graces the lawn in Prospect Park this Summer. As part of his “bunker” series, Ursachi’s “Fat Boy” is a signifier with its cherubic face, but also a signifier of the WWII atomic bombs, Little Boy and Fat Man, giving the sculpture twin references. The “bunker series” references not only war, but nesting, shelter and refuge. Fat Boy can be seen in Prospect Park. Its companion, Behind Fat Boy can be seen at the Brooklyn Public Library. Both will be on view through September 25, 2015.
7. Peacocks in the Garden at the Bartow-Pell Mansion in Pelham Bay Park
“Long–Tailed Peacock and Short–Tailed Peacock” were originally created in 1920 by sculptor Gaston Lachaise. Commissioned separately, they have been brought together this Summer in the gardens of the Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum in Pelham Bay Park. The pair of bronze installations will be on view in the Bronx through May 7, 2016.
6. HeartSeat in Fort Greene Park
Created out of a repurposed water tank, this useful and colorful installation, HeartSeat, was the inspiration of the Brooklyn based design studio Stereotank. HeartSeat was originally commissioned for the Times Square Valentine Heart Design Competition, with the name HeartBeat, and moved from there to the Pearl Street Triangle in DUMBO. Now on view in Fort Greene Park through October 2015.
5. High Bridge Park Considers the Chair & Prospect Park Invites You to Sit
The High Bridge which is the oldest bridge in NYC still standing, has come alive this summer, and along with the opening of the bridge itself, nine artists have installed artwork resembling chairs along the esplanade. The installation, named “Oh Sit! Consider the Chair” presents new and exciting ways to get off your feet and enjoy your surroundings. Oh Sit! will be on view through November 8, 2015.
The Prospect Park Alliance and Paul Smith’s College have an inviting new installation aptly entitled “Park It”. Artisans from the college have created Adirondack chairs that are strategically placed throughout the Park. Take a pic from a chair, post it #ProspectParkit for a chance to win an Adirondack chair.
4. “Borrowed Light” Brings Art and Sound to Sunset Park
Artist Sari Carel has created a multi-featured installation, incorporating abstract geometric forms and recordings of the park’s local fauna. “Borrowed Light”, in Sunset Park, brings with it a full range of related workshops and performances scheduled throughout the Summer. The exhibit, which is located next to the Sunset Park Recreational Center, will be up through October 5, 2015.
3. “Sky Feather” is now in the Riverside Park Bird Sanctuary
Petros Chrisostomou’s “Sky Feather” first made its appearance on Lenox Avenue and 124th Street in Harlem. This year, the sculpture will attract visitors at the Riverside Park Bird Sanctuary as part of the Riverside Park Conservancy International Studio and Curatorial Program through June 2016.
2. Tribeca Park has The Head of Goliath
Living in an urban environment, trash is a constant, and sometimes annoying, part of city life. Artist Nicholas Holiber created “Head of Goliath” as a metaphor of the City towering over those who stand before it. But using trash to create this installation makes it all the more endearing to those that contend with it every day, and appreciate his creative use of what had once been discarded. The colorful four-foot long exhibit will be on display in Tribeca Park through September 15, 2015.
1. “A Bench for the Night” at MoMA PS1
Fanny Allie’s latest piece, “A Bench for the Night” is the most recent addition to MoMA PS1 in Queens. Her wooden bench, shaped in the silhouette of a sleeping person, is her continuation of artworks created to bring awareness about homelessness. You might remember her life-size steel silhouette named “Serendipity”of a formerly homeless man, Christopher Gamble, in Tompkins Square Park last year. “Bench in the Night”will be on display through November 15, 2015.
Next, check out the extensive exhibition Panorama along the High Line. Get in touch with the author at AFineLyne