The East River Ferry is like the Caribbean Cruise Liner of Gotham – especially on a perfectly glorious sunny day. From 34th street the boat zigzags across to Long Island City and then south to Williamsburg, the Brooklyn Bridge, Wall Street and Governor’s Island. Riding on top of the boat yesterday with the wind in our hair and Manhattan receding in the background, the Liner’s advertising mantra of ‘discovering new lands’ was strangely appropriate, even though Brooklyn was our destination.

Brooklyn is not what is used to be. The shoreline either side of the bridge has been transformed from decaying dockland to a cleverly developed green playground, with trees and playing fields and bike paths. There are swings and skating rinks, basketball and barbecues, and the landscaping has a hill and dale effect, courtesy of the mountains of rock extracted from the underground extensions to the 2nd avenue subway line. But best of all, the Brooklyn Bridge Park has art.

The Public Art Fund, under the cutting edge vision of Australian Nicholas Baume, is showcasing the fun and interactive work of Denmark’s Jeppe Hein. This multimedia artist has created psychedelic seats in impossible positions with breathtaking views, a maze of mirrors reflecting the world inwards and outwards, and a water feature that will probably be the singularly most popular destination in NYC this year. Appropriately named Please Touch the Art, this room-like feature shoots walls of water into the air seemingly at random, rising and falling almost as if the artist was at the controls, intent on drenching that little child just as they stepped cautiously into the space. The shrieks and laughter corresponded to being caught and by the end of the day everyone was dripping wet. As we sailed away all the cooler for the experience I wondered if they shouldn’t rename the exhibition Try To Resist!


This entry was posted in art & inspiration, events, gardens, Uncategorized and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Waterways

  1. ck1957 says:

    Fantastic Gabrielle! My wish was that we had more time to explore all these wonderful places you write about. We tell our friends who are coming to New York to read your blog and they love it.

  2. Peter Lipson says:

    You mentioned a problem on a posting on your recent blog. No problem here. Keep up the good work!!

  3. Peter Lugg says:

    Dear Gabrielle, your post with those eloquent photos bring back the fondest of memories. I remember being struck by those water towers interspersed along the skyline and a similar sun filled day. Thank you for your wonderful work.

  4. John says:

    My daughter and family from Kadina SA will be in NY September, have passed on your blog details
    Love your discussions on the ABC

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s