Art in the Parks

Through collaborations with a diverse group of arts organizations and artists, Parks bringsto the public both experimental and traditional art in many park locations. Please browse ourlist of current exhibits below, explore our archives of past exhibits or readmore about the Art in the Parks Program.

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Current Exhibits

Bronx

Image courtesy of Publicolor

Publicolor, Fractured Spectrum
November 9, 2020 to November 8, 2021
Franz Sigel Park, Bronx
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Description:

This mural’s abstract design captures motion with colors that convey an abundance of energy and brings life to this exterior retaining wall along Walton Avenue. Residents in the community and park visitors will develop a joy and appreciation of color, and how it affects our moods and behavior. This mural was painted by Publicolor, a youth development program that fights poverty by aggressively addressing the alarming dropout rate and low levels of educational attainment and youth employment in New York City. The program engages high-risk, low-income students, ages 12-24, in a multi-year continuum of design-based programs to encourage academic achievement, college preparation, job readiness, and community service.

Photo: Fitzhugh Karol, Field’s Jax Thicket, Courtesy of the artist.

Fitzhugh Karol, Field’s Jax Thicket
September 2, 2020 to September 1, 2021
Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum
Pelham Bay Park, Bronx
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Description:
Field’s Jax Thicket, by Brooklyn-based sculptor Fitzhugh Karol, consists of four works created using steel recycled from a previous single large sculpture, now re-conceived as smaller and more interactive sculptures. Previously exhibited at four locations around the DUMBO neighborhood in Brooklyn, the sculptures are reunited in a playful arrangement on the lawn of the Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum in Pelham Bay Park. For the Field’s Jax series, Karol worked with nine parts from his monumental sculpture Eyes, which was on view in Staten Island’s Tappen Park in 2017.

Brooklyn

Daniele Frazier, Big Bird, courtesy of the artist

Daniele Frazier, Big Bird
December 28, 2020 to December 27, 2021
Highland Park, Brooklyn
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Description:
Big Bird features a six-foot-tall aluminum cutout of a white-bellied caique parrot, hand-painted in sign enamel. The bird is perched twenty feet above the ground, as if it were surveying the activities of park-goers below. Hanging from the perch is a bronze bell, recalling the types of "enrichment" toys that are provided for caged birds. In keeping with themes of Frazier's past works that depend on interaction with the weather, the bell rings in high winds and can be heard even where the piece cannot be seen.

Photo credit: courtesy of the artist

Rocko Rupert, TimberWolf
October 31, 2020 to October 25, 2021
Maria Hernandez Park, Brooklyn
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Description:

TimberWolf takes utilitarian materials like reclaimed lumber to beautify this corner of the park and serves as a metaphor for how everyday materials can be repurposed. It plays into the importance of resourcefulness, breathing use back into what is considered to be “used-up.” The artwork takes the form of a dog’s head, a nod to the popular nearby dog park. At the end of the public art installation period, TimberWolf will be donated to another public space to be enjoyed. The possibility to be reused or repurposed with additional functionalities gives this living installation another life.

Image credit: Photo by David Andrako

Brooklyn Hi-Art! Machine (Mildred Beltre and Oasa DuVerney), Inspired By “What Is Left”
October 3, 2020 to June 20, 2021
Prospect Park Bandshell
Prospect Park, Brooklyn
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Description:
This installation comes from the 1993 Lucille Clifton (1936-2010) poem, “won’t you celebrate with me.” Clifton's words offer a reminder of the daily struggle for survival that Black women endure and of the work for racial equality that still remains to be done. Through the word "celebrate," the quote provides a more nuanced understanding of the ongoing struggle for equality and connects to the artwork’s call for both joy and work, anger and love. Known as a host for many joyous and powerful celebrations, this installation continues Prospect Park and the Bandshell’s history as a gathering space and platform where Brooklyn can unite under a common cause. This has come even more to the forefront during the COVID-19 pandemic and Black Lives Matter movement, where it has served as the backdrop for moments of protest and joy, celebration and memorialization, making it the perfect location for this installation.   

This exhibition is presented by BRIC and Prospect Park Alliance.

Image credit: Courtesy of Photoville

Various Artists, The FENCE
April 16, 2021 to May 20, 2021
Anchorage Plaza, Brooklyn
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Description:

The Photoville FENCE is a year-round public photography project exhibited in major parks and downtowns across North America. Featuring over 85 photographers annually, the exhibition brings compelling visual stories into the public realm, and to a wide and diverse audience. Consistently attracting exceptional work by a diverse pool of photographers, the Photoville FENCE spotlights a wide range of photographic and lens-based stories. By exploring the universal themes of People, Streets, Play, Creatures, Home, Food and Nature, the exhibition elevates our understanding of the world-at-large and issues close to home.

This exhibition is presented by Photoville.

Manhattan

Photo courtesy of the artist

Joanne Howard, The Elders
April 18, 2021 to November 30, 2021
Carl Schurz Park, Manhattan
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Description:

Joanne Howard’s public art installation The Elders is comprised of small brass sculptures cast from carved apples. Howard carves faces into apples before letting them sit for a period of time. As the apples dehydrate, their faces take on the role of wizened elders. Howard sees these miniature characters as guardians of nature, here to protect the natural environment and also to gently remind passersby of the preciousness and precarious state of our green spaces. The artworks can be found on the fences near the park entrance at East 86th Street and East End Avenue and the Hoop Garden.

Image credit: Sam Moyer, “Doors for Doris,” 2020, Bluestone, poured concrete, assorted marble, and steel, Presented by Public Art Fund at Doris C. Freedman Plaza, September 16, 2020-September 12, 2021, Courtesy Sam Moyer Studio and Sean Kelly, New York, Photo: Nicholas Knight, Courtesy Public Art Fund, NY

Sam Moyer, Doors for Doris
September 16, 2020 to September 12, 2021
Doris C. Freedman Plaza
Central Park, Manhattan
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Description:
To mark the threshold between Central Park’s boulder-filled terrain and Midtown Manhattan’s built environment, Sam Moyer has created a massive three-part sculpture, with a title that pays homage to Public Art Fund founder, Doris C. Freedman (1928-1981). Moyer’s hybrid sculpture unites imported stone with rock indigenous to the New York region. The artist inlaid marble fragments into three double-sided vertical concrete slabs and framed them with contrasting rough-hewn bluestone monoliths. Each stone in Moyer’s mosaic compositions takes on an even more striking hue against the others and the locally-quarried rock, an apt metaphor that encourages us to consider the diverse character of our city and our interconnected lives within it. Their final arrangement demonstrates her impressive skill in composing sculptural forms, with its “doors” pivoted ajar to evoke the dynamism of the bustling city. 

This exhibition is presented by Public Art Fund.

Photo by Tina Sokolovskaya

Gillie and Marc, King Nyani
August 25, 2020 to August 23, 2021
Bella Abzug Park, Manhattan
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Description:
In collaboration with the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund, artists Gillie and Marc Schattner have brought another version of King Kong’s story to the streets of New York, this time with love. Gorillas are one of our closest relatives sharing 98% of our DNA. They share many of the same behaviors as humans such as laughter and sadness. But there may be only 1000 mountain gorilla left in the wild and fewer than 3800 eastern lowland gorilla. On a trip to Uganda, the artists were able to see a family of mountain gorillas in the wild and were moved to tears at the loving family unit. Their sculpture is based on the head of the family, a dominant silverback gorilla. King Nyani, Swahili for gorilla, is the largest bronze gorilla statue in the world and gives an interactive experience unlike any other. With his hand large enough to fit 2-3 people, the public can get up close and personal with this gentle giant and fall in love with him.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Cavalier Galleries

Jim Rennert, Timing, Inner Dialogue and Commute
December 19, 2020 to August 22, 2021
Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, Manhattan
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Description:

Drawing on both his past professional experiences, and those of his contemporaries, Rennert composes thought-provoking works through simplified figures and forms. Together, these three monumental bronze sculptures are inspired by artist Jim Rennert’s past experiences in the competitive world of business. Each title works together with the visual image to illustrate the experience, sometimes physical, sometimes psychological and showcase the thoughts and ideas we all deal with in our contemporary society.

Photo credit: courtesy of the artist

Noa Bornstein, Peace Gorilla
November 30, 2020 to August 15, 2021
Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, Manhattan
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Description:

Cast in bronze in 2020, this sculpture was originally created by Brooklyn-based artist Noa Bornstein ten years ago out of sisal fiber and burlap in structolite and plaster over an armature of wire mesh and plumbing sections. The sculpture is mounted on a low concrete base inscribed with the word for ‘friend’ in 90 languages—beginning with the six official languages of the UN--all learned or verified with speakers of the languages over the last year. For additional/interactive content please visit peacegorilla.noabornstein.com.

Various Artists, Up South
January 29, 2021 to July 30, 2021
Col. Young Playground, Manhattan
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Description:

Up South interprets and honors those who birthed the movements leading up to the Harlem Renaissance, and beyond, to forge a continuum of Black thinkers and excellence that amplify the historical contributions of African/Black/Americans in Harlem. The exhibit reflects on the movement and embraces the imagery of textile art to move the narrative forward. Harlem Needle Arts’ continuous aim is to present works that are accessible to the African diasporic community and people of color, reflect social and political concerns, share histories of our existence, and represent unique artistic expressions as we introduce audiences to the legacy of textile arts. Up South uses the natural landscape of Colonel Charles Young Triangle Park and challenge artists to broaden their scope to present works which directly engage the community.

This visual interpretation in textile features the work of artists Laura R. Gadson, Sylvia Hernandez, Oluwaseyi Awoyomi, and Ife Felix. Their works honor the contributions of Casper Holstein, the Harlem Hellfighters 369th Regiment Orchestra, Georgina Douglas Johnson, Lois Mailou Jones, Aaron Douglas, and the northward migration to Harlem.

This exhibition is presented by Harlem Needle Arts.

Image courtesy of the artist

Manuel Ferreiro Badia, Compostela Fractal Study of a Shell
February 3, 2020 to June 30, 2021
Finn Square, Manhattan
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Description:
The sculpture Compostela Fractal Study of a Shell is based on origami studies and is composed of broken steel planes that cause the sculpture to change or live with sunlight. It reflects in an abstract way the fractal system of matter, looking for a simplicity that reflects the interior of every being. It is a work inspired in the study of the nature, in particular of a shell: the volume is reduced to its fractal structure, to its geometry.

Installation view of Asia Society Triennial: We Do Not Dream Alone at The Park Avenue Malls at East 70th Street, New York, March—June, 2021. Xu Zhen®, Eternity—Male Figure, Statue of Venus Genetrix, 2019—20, Courtesy XU ZHEN® and James Cohan, New York. Photography by Salvador Pantoja, courtesy Asia Society

Xu Zhen®, Eternity—Male Figure, Statue of Venus Genetrix
March 26, 2021 to June 26, 2021
East 70th Street
Park Avenue Malls, Manhattan
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Description:

Eternity—Male Figure, Statue of Venus Genetrix is a suite of three nearly identical sculptures. Two appear inside the Asia Society Museum galleries, and one is placed on the Park Avenue median adjacent to Asia Society. Each cast is taken from replicas of an eleventh-century male figure from Cambodia that is in the Asia Society Museum Collection and a second-century Roman figure of Venus Genetrix, which is in the collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum. The appropriation and replication of these classical statues—deemed to be among the highest benchmarks of Asian and western civilizations, respectively, and included in iconic western collections—address entrenched Eurocentric hierarchies within the art-historical canon and subtly allude to complex issues related to provenance, patrimony, and connoisseurship in the United States, especially in relation to historical collecting practices of premodern, non-western art.

This exhibition is presented by Asia Society and the Fund for Park Avenue.

Image credit: Photo by Aliyah Blackmore, courtesy of Harlem Needle Arts

Alex Reynoso, I AM FREE
July 6, 2020 to June 24, 2021
Col. Young Playground, Manhattan
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Description:

What does it mean to create space for reflection and visioning? What does it mean to know your past, present and future? What does it mean to know that you are more than enslaved people? Harlem Needle Arts is pleased to present We the People | Disrupting Silence, a public art installation that pays tribute to the ingenuity, creativity and sacrifices of Africans of the Diaspora, who suffered the atrocity of enslavement, marginalization and disenfranchisement. This installation by Alex Reynoso joins Nacinimod Deodee’s A Long Walk to Freedom and Reflection on the opposite side of the park.

This project is presented by Harlem Needle Arts.

Photo credit: Courtesy of NYC Parks

Luciano Garbati, Medusa With The Head of Perseus
October 13, 2020 to May 30, 2021
Collect Pond Park, Manhattan
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Description:

Medusa With The Head of Perseus is a seven-foot bronze sculpture that inverts the narrative of Medusa, portraying her in a moment of somberly empowered self-defense. In Ovid’s Metamorphosis, Medusa was a maiden in the temple of Athena, who was stalked and raped by Poseidon. Athena, in a rage, banishes and curses Medusa with a monstrous head of snakes and a gaze which turns men to stone. Medusa is herself blamed and punished for the crime of which she was the victim; she is cast away as a monster and then with the cruel assistance of Athena and Poseidon, eventually is hunted-down and beheaded by the epic hero Perseus, who displays her head as a trophy on his shield. Garbati’s sculpture speaks directly to the 16th Century Florentine bronze masterpiece Perseus with the Head of Medusa by Benvenuto Cellini (1545-1554). Through this work, Garbati asks “how can a triumph be possible if you are defeating a victim?”

This exhibition is presented by MWTH Project.

Queens

Photo credit: Courtesy of the artists

Jeannine Han and Dan Riley,, Another way it could go
October 20, 2020 to October 15, 2021
Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens
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Description:

This work pays homage to the incredible universe of possibilities present at every moment. The reality we find ourselves in is just a glimpse or sliver of an epic landscape of decisions that constantly eludes us. This work illustrates a bit of this conundrum by constructing a living model from a computer simulation in which multiple dimensions of decisions have been overlaid. It is dedicated to the infinite histories taken and untaken that have led everywhere and nowhere. The embedded hand-laid mosaic refers directly to the location of the sculpture in Corona, Queens and illustrates a hand placing a cube and “sprinkling some sauce all over,” as a local resident described.

This exhibition is made possible by the Art in the Parks: Alliance for Flushing Meadows Corona Park Grant, which supports the creation of site-specific public artworks by Queens-based artists for two sites within Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

Image Credit: Photo by Jorge Marrón, courtesy of The Rockaway Hotel

Shantell Martin, Big Yard Mural
October 11, 2020 to October 10, 2021
Seaside Playground, Queens
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Description:

The artist is best known for her dynamic, category-defying, larger-than-life drawings. Her work explores identity as a critical pathway to self-expression and often asks, who are you? Martin uses her signature lines, iconic shapes, and primarily monochromatic black and white imagery to reflect the vibrancy of Rockaway’s community and urban beach landscape. The transformed 16,000 square foot outdoor recreational space is now a 360-degree activation where text and images appear out of her fluid and interconnected lines.

This project was made possible by Friends of Seaside Playground (FOSP), in collaboration with 7G Group, and The Rockway Hotel.

Image Credit: Daniel Avila / NYC Parks

Gaston Lachaise, Floating Woman (Floating Figure)
September 24, 2020 to September 23, 2021
Hunter's Point South Park, Queens
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Description:

The work is one of Lachaise’s best-known, monumental works dating from the late twenties. The buoyant, expansive figure represents a timeless earth goddess, one Lachaise knew and sought to capture throughout his career. This vision was inspired by his wife, who was his muse and model, Isabel, that “majestic woman” who walked by him once by the Bank of the Seine. This work is a tribute to the power of all women, to ‘Woman,’ as the artist referred to his wife, with a capital W.

Gaston Lachaise devoted himself to the human form, producing a succession of powerfully conceived nude figures in stone and bronze that reinvigorated the sculptural traditions of Auguste Rodin and Aristide Maillol.

This exhibition is presented by Hunters Point Parks Conservancy and the Lachaise Foundation.

Image Credit: Photo by Reiko Yanagi, courtesy of the artist

Jack Howard-Potter, Torso II, Swinging II, Messenger of the Gods (medium)
September 13, 2020 to September 12, 2021
Court Square Park, Queens
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Description:
Long Island City based sculptor, Jack Howard-Potter, makes large, often kinetic, figurative steel sculptures that can  be seen in city governments, sculpture parks and public art shows around the country.  The outdoor public arena is the perfect setting for the academic roots to be easily recognizable and accessible, bridging the gap between the fine art institution and the public. It all comes together in an effort to brighten the landscape and shift someone's gaze to break the daily routine with something beautiful.  

Image credit: courtesy of the artist

Laura Lappi, 7 x 7 (HOPE)
September 12, 2020 to September 5, 2021
Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens
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Description:
Finnish-born, Queens-based artist Laura Lappi’s 7 x 7 (Hope) explores issues of space in New York City and the cost of living and housing, and how that impacts many communities. With this sculpture, Lappi draws attention especially to immigrant communities and their living conditions in Queens. While Queens is the New York City’s most culturally diverse borough welcoming immigrants from different backgrounds, its housing affordability is often out of a reach for many people.  The sculpture consists of a black wooden house structure that measures seven feet long, five feet wide and seven feet high, referring to the size of the average illegal basement room. Each wall has an embedded letter, creating a word H-O-P-E. Inside the structure a light is making the sculpture visible and glowing during the night.

This exhibition is made possible by the Art in the Parks: Alliance for Flushing Meadows Corona Park Grant, which supports the creation of site-specific public artworks by Queens-based artists for two sites within Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

Image credit: Courtesy of Lewis H. Latimer House Museum

Shervone Neckles and BEAM Center, BEACON
March 27, 2021 to August 15, 2021
Lewis H Latimer House, Queens
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Description:
BEACON is inspired by African American inventor Lewis H. Latimer and his 1881 patent for the electric lamp and 1882 patent for processing carbon filament in the incandescent light bulb. This installation is a replication of Latimer's mechanical drawing of the incandescent light bulb and carbon filament. The fabrication process is designed to align the Beam Center’s mission of bridging the humanities and STEAM disciplines to improve the conditions of our society with the living legacy of a local and historical pioneer. The work is also a metaphor for the tension that exists between our interior and exterior worlds. We are constantly negotiating the outside worlds perception of who we are and our potential, versus the way we actually view ourselves. BEACON is a collaborative project between artist Shervone Neckles, Beam Center and Lewis H. Latimer House Museum.

Image credit: photo by Angus Mordant, courtesy of the artist

Kris Perry, Mother Earth
August 12, 2020 to August 11, 2021
Beach 98 St. at Rockaway Boardwalk, Queens
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Description:
Mother Earth draws on an array of architectural elements,  from temples, mosques, and churches to the open columned spaces of Classical Greek buildings. The spire directs the viewer’s gaze skyward while its reflected shape points back down towards the Earth. Visitors are encouraged to occupy the sculpture’s central space where one can look outward upon the landscape in a moment of introspection. The 35-foot-tall sculpture is made of Corten steel, a material that will evolve with the seasons and site.

Image credit: Photo by Ne

Nancy Baker Cahill, Liberty Bell
July 4, 2020 to July 3, 2021
Beach 108 St. at Rockaway Boardwalk and the Rockaway Ferry Landing, Queens
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Description:

Liberty Bell is an animated, monumental, and richly sonorous augmented reality (AR) drawing in 360 degrees. The public artwork will be geolocated at a series of sites and experienced on smartphones and tablets through Baker Cahill’s free 4th Wall app. This project, which is two years in the making, lives at the vibrant intersection of public art, social consciousness, and tech. It is being presented simultaneously in six cities in the United States: Boston, MA, Charleston, SC, Philadelphia, PA, Rockaway, NY, Selma, AL, and Washington, DC.

In this polarized and tumultuous election year, many concerns persist around the founding principles of American freedom and democracy. Inequality, structural racism, injustice, and the ability to vote are chief among them. Inspired by the original cracked Liberty Bell in Philadelphia, the drawing hovers beyond viewers, swaying with the rich and layered sound of bells tolling. The Liberty Bell soundscape morphs from the rhythmic lulling of a tolling bell, into a harmonious and dissonant sequence of ringing as it becomes increasingly unpredictable and arrhythmic. The richly textured brushstrokes and bell sounds resemble loosely knitted threads that unravel and come together in an uncomfortable, but cohesive moment. They reflect the evolution and transformation of liberty over time into the complex reality we face today. This exhibition is presented by Art Production Fund, in partnership with 7G Foundation and the Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy, a project of the Fund for the City of New York.

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