Visitors to the Prospect Park Wildlife Center are greeted at its southern entrance by several larger-than-life topiary sculptures of various animals. Artist Mags Harries (born 1945) designed the steel armature representations of a chameleon, a snake eating a frog, an octopus and five garden eels, which were installed in 1993 along the main court at the entrance to the Prospect Park Wildlife Center. The Korean boxwood plants used in the topiary project are designed to grow slowly over the course of 20 years, lending a dynamic quality to Harries’ creation.
The installation of this piece was sponsored by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs' Percent for Art program. Harries, a Boston-area artist, has works on display at Boston's Museum of Fine Art and the Boston Public Library, and also created a 19-site 35-piece installation along five miles of the Piestewa Freeway in Phoenix, Arizona.
Topiary: A Twenty-Year Project Details
- Location: Prospect Park Zoo; north and south entrances
- Sculptor: Mags Harries
- Architect: Goldstone & Hinz
- Description: Eight topiary figures with armatures of composed of rods and industrial grating along intertwining serpentine paths
- Materials: Armatures--steel, aluminum (color-coated)
- Dimensions: h 8' to 20' ; paths l 30' to 180' x w 12' to 25'
- Cast: ca. 1993
- Dedicated: October 5, 1993
- Fabricator: Mags Harries
- Donor: $170,000; Percent for Art, New York City
Directions to Prospect Park
Know Before You Go
There are currently 3 service interruptions affecting access within this park.
The Prospect Park Well House is under reconstruction in order to build a new composting latrine. The park remains open while the building gets reconstructed.
Anticipated Completion: Winter 2015
The Long Meadow Ballfields will be closed at Prospect Park for construction. The reconstruction of the Long Meadow Ballfields is a multi-phase project encompassing 34 acres of fields, paths and woodlands. The project incorporates contemporary storm water management techniques that support our goal of capturing and retaining storm water runoff. These improvements will also help to filter runoff before it enters our watercourse. Designed to revitalize the park’s sporting community, the first phase will restore Field One, pedestrian and bridle paths, drinking fountains, benches, and include new tree plantings.
Anticipated Completion: Summer 2015
Starting July 6, 2015, Prospect Park's West Drive will be permanently car-free after 9 a.m. on weekdays and 24 hours a day on weekends and holidays. For more information, please visit on.nyc.gov/1MOAh40.
Prospect Park Weather
- Shape Up NYC: Cardio Toning
- Nature Exploration
- Lola Star's Dreamland Roller Disco Party: Hair Metal
- Introduction to Bird Watching
- Medicinal Plants Hike
- Barbecuing Areas
- Baseball Fields
- Bicycling and Greenways
- Dog-friendly Areas
- Fitness Equipment
- Great Trees
- Hiking Trails
- Historic Houses
- Horseback Riding Trails
- Ice Skating Rinks
- Nature Centers
- Spray Showers
- Tennis Courts
- Wi-Fi Hot Spots
- Zoos and Aquariums
Know when to go:
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