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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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Find out which current exhibits are on display near you, and browse our permanent monument collection.

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Image courtesy of the artist

Judith Modrak, Our Memories
May 1, 2018 to January 27, 2019
Thomas Paine Park, Manhattan
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Please note: This is a past exhibit that is no longer installed in the park.

Description:
Our Memories is an evolving audience participatory installation. Recognizing the need to record one's personal experience, these neuron-inspired sculptures contain cavities in which participants place a color-coded "memory stone". The memory stones are classified into six emotive categories: joy, anger, love, sadness, fear, and surprise. This active act of recollection not only stirs up personal memories, it also physiologically generates a new collective memory. The Our Memories project is both a larger memorial piece, made complete by thousands of individual memories from people all over the world, and an experience that connects us to our core and to one another.

Judith Peck, Ladies of Steel

Judith Peck, Ladies of Steel
July 2001 to February 2002
Second Avenue and 47th Street
Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, Manhattan

Please note: This is a past exhibit that is no longer installed in the park.

Description:
Seated Woman, pictured here, is one of the three Ladies of Steel by sculptor Judith Peck on view at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza. These abstract female forms, descriptively titled, Seated Woman - Red, Falling Woman, and Reclining Woman - Black, Red and Yellow, will on display at the plaza until February 2002. Judith Peck cut, bent, welded, and painted sheets of steel to bring form to the Ladies who range in lengths from 6 to 8 feet.

Image Courtesy of the artist

Jarrod Beck, Uplift
August 20, 2014 to August 19, 2015
Sara D. Roosevelt Park, Manhattan
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Please note: This is a past exhibit that is no longer installed in the park.

Description:

Uplift sits on a tree–lined terrace in Sara D. Roosevelt Park. Made from recycled rubber conveyor belts once used to cart ore out of West Virginia mines, the work suggests stratified rock or a grouping of recently unearthed tectonic plates. Uplift is both memorial and artifact, reminding us of loss, but also rooted in a deep time beyond our memories.

Photo courtesy of AREA4

AREA4 and Suchi Reddy, Prospect Park 150: The Connective Project
July 7, 2017 to July 17, 2017
Prospect Park, Brooklyn
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Please note: This is a past exhibit that is no longer installed in the park.

Description:

Prospect Park Alliance, AREA4 and Suchi Reddy of Reddymade Architecture & Design debut a large-scale public art installation in Prospect Park on the occasion of the Park’s 150th Anniversary. The Connective Project transforms Prospect Park’s Rose Garden—a little-known landscape in the Park’s northeast corner—into an immersive, engaging and ever-growing display. The Connective Project is composed of more than 7,000 individually designed pinwheels, printed with artwork, photographs, verse and prose submitted by the public. During the installation, the public will be invited to take part in making additional pinwheels to add to the display during select hours. Reddy chose pinwheels because they are universally loved objects of childhood memories, much like public parks, and evoke nature in their movement attuned to wind and natural forces.

This exhibition is presented by the Prospect Park Alliance.

Humanity Fountain, Anne McClain & Friends

Anne McClain & Friends, Humanity Fountain
August 9, 2010 to November 5, 2010
Msgr. McGolrick Park, Brooklyn

Please note: This is a past exhibit that is no longer installed in the park.

Description:
​With the knowledge that scent conveys memories and feelings in an impactful way, artist and perfumer Anne McClain created Humanity Fountain, a monument to everyday compassion. The fountain emits a subtle fragrance composed of all natural plant materials (white lotus, sandalwood, mate tea and diluted water).  This exhibition also serves as a backdrop for educational programs by local artists, ranging from natural perfumery and botanical sciences to informative sessions on creative ways to participate in volunteer opportunities in North Brooklyn neighborhoods. For information on these program, visit trustart.org.

Commissioned by TRUST ART. In collaboration with Lance McGregor, Alan Iwamura, Isaac Tecosky, Facundo Newbery, and Jarek Klim. Supported by the Open Space Alliance for North Brooklyn.

Photo by A. Dorlester, NYC Parks & Recreation

Arthur Simms, Real Estate for BirdsΑ
October 6, 2007 to March 17, 2008
Grand Army Plaza entrance
Prospect Park, Brooklyn

Please note: This is a past exhibit that is no longer installed in the park.

Description:

Arthur Simms takes mundane artifacts of daily life and industrial waste and turns them into creative objects loaded with cultural memories and spiritual references. Like many of his works, Real Estate for BirdsΑ is made from found materials: a telephone pole, rope, wood, wire, bird houses, glue, skateboards, bamboo, screws, nails, and bottle caps. Simms’s work frequently examines the cross-cultural dialogue between his native Jamaica and the United States. He lives and works in Queens, where he collects the various cast-off objects—bottles, rocks, wire, and scrap metal—that he incorporates into his work.

Simms was born in 1961 in Saint Andrews, Jamaica. He holds an MFA and BFA from Brooklyn College and also attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. His sculpture has been exhibited widely, including group shows at the Queens Museum of Art, Brooklyn Museum, and P.S.1/MoMA. He is a recipient of the 2002-2003 Rome Prize, a 1999 Guggenheim fellowship, and was featured in the prestigious 2001 Venice Biennale, representing Jamaica. Just a short walk from Prospect Park, a new work by Simms is included in the exhibition Infinite Islands: Contemporary Caribbean Art at the Brooklyn Museum until January 27, 2008.

This project was presented in cooperation with the Prospect Park Alliance and made possible with funding by Forest City Ratner Companies and in-kind assistance from Con Edison.

Image credit: courtesy of NYC Parks.

Maren Hassinger, Maren Hassinger: Monuments
June 16, 2018 to June 10, 2019
Marcus Garvey Park, Manhattan
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Description:
In Maren Hassinger; Monuments, the eight sculptures on view respond to the landscape of Marcus Garvey Park. Hassinger considers the natural environment a site of hope and potential, a place of equality, where humanity has a shared purpose of stewardship and understanding. According to Hassinger, "Within nature, we are equal." Maren Hassinger: Monuments transforms Marcus Garvey Park into a space both physical and psychological and prompts the audience to consider the place of nature in their lives. Each of the eight sculptures is meant to provide a contemplative moment, one that invites multiple responses that call forth memories or associations for those who encounter them.

Arlene Shechet, Full Steam Ahead
September 25, 2018 to April 28, 2019
Madison Square Park, Manhattan
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Please note: This is a past exhibit that is no longer installed in the park.

Description:

For Full Steam Ahead, Arlene Shechet reconfigures the Park’s emptied circular reflecting pool with a series of sculptures, designing the space as an outdoor room or what Shechet calls “a manufactured version of nature.” Her installation straddles function and art by including seating for conversation, fostering interaction within the Park’s teeming urban site. Initially inspired by memories of the sunken living room in her grandparents’ apartment, she encourages visitors to step into the reflecting pool to linger and reflect.

Along the pathways and perimeter of the reflecting pool, Shechet has chosen to realize human-scale sculpture to relate to the physical presence of traversing visitors, utilizing forms that reflect her interest in historical decorative arts and are suggestive of flora and fauna: the outsized remnants of a lion’s head and paw; remains of a bird’s colossal feather displayed high on a pedestal as an ominous trophy; and tree-like sculptures and branches in cast iron. As visitors walk around the installation, they will discern deliberate contradiction in Shechet’s work: figuration and abstraction, humor and narrative, mass and immateriality, innovation and extinction.

This exhibition is presented by Madison Square Park Conservancy.

Sebastian Masuda, Time After Time Capsule
April 29, 2015 to September 13, 2015
Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, Manhattan
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Please note: This is a past exhibit that is no longer installed in the park.

Description:

Time After Time Capsule, a nine-foot tall, translucent sculpture is in the shape of Hello Kitty packed full of personal objects collected from everyday New Yorkers and is just half a block from Japan Society Gallery, where the exhibition Life of Cats: Selections from the Hiraki Ukiyo-e Collection, with over 130 cat-focused woodblock prints, paintings, and other artworks from 18th to early 20th century is on display.

Time after Time Capsule is a creation of Sebastian Masuda, a Japanese artist and an instigator of Japan’s craze over kawaii (cute) culture gone global. Masuda has been behind the empowerment of cute girland youth-culture since 1995 through his artful and colorful concept shop 6%DOKIDOKI in Tokyo’s fashion destination Harajuku. Masuda has made it his mission to encourage people to recall their childlike sense of wonder by transmitting kawaii culture.

Time After Time Capsule is part of an ongoing, multi-city participatory project with like capsules displayed last year in Miami, this year in New York and Amsterdam, and future cities currently under consideration. In each location, the artist plans a series of children and family workshops collaborating with the project’s community to create colorful objects using their personal items and cute objects from 6%DOKIDOKI. The objects created by the participants will be inserted into the capsule sculpture coloring the work as more items are added throughout the duration of the installation. All will be united in 2020 in Tokyo to mark the Tokyo Olympics, bringing together the contained memories from all the participating cities.

This exhibition is presented by the Japan Society and the Friends of Dag Hammarskjold Plaza.

Courtesy of Lower Manhattan Cultural Council

Nanna Debois Buhl, Do you remember the bananasΑ
July 20, 2013 to November 30, 2013
Pier 42, Manhattan
Map/Directions (in Google Maps)

Please note: This is a past exhibit that is no longer installed in the park.

Description:

The Lower East Side Waterfront Alliance & Lower Manhattan Cultural Council invited artists and design professionals to participate in a community-driven, site-responsive design process for the temporary activation of Pier 42 on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Artists and designers were asked to propose ideas for cultural activity including temporary public art, small-scale interventions, programming and event spaces that directly engage the site and community in which the pier is located.

Nanna Debois Buhl is a Brooklyn-based artist born in Denmark. Her projects examine historical or cultural knowledge through plants, animals, and architectural components. She uses the formats of maps and atlases in her artistic practice, and her works are realized through a combination of installations, drawing, film, text, photography, and sound.

Buhl’s project “Do you remember the bananasΑ” is a painted herbarium depicting the banana plants that historically entered the city, traversing Pier 42 until 1987; and drawing on people’s memories of the period.

For more information on the project please visit Paths to Pier 42.

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