John Metcalfe was CityLab’s Bay Area bureau chief, covering climate change and the science of cities.
It’s like time stopped during a carnival-funhouse explosion.
Love public art that makes reality seem fracturing into hundreds of shards? Then run on down to New York’s Madison Square Park, where everything’s been festooned with floating, disorienting mirrors.
Local artist Teresita Fernández has hung 500 feet of reflective fragments over the park’s pathways, creating illusions of time freezing during a carnival-funhouse explosion. The installation, which officially debuted on Monday, is called Fata Morgana after a type of mirage that appears on the horizon. The people at Mad. Sq. Art explain more:
The metal forms, perforated with intricate patterns reminiscent of foliage, will create abstract flickering effects as sunlight filters through the canopy, casting a golden glow across the expanse of the work, paths, and passersby….
“Fata Morgana is a site-specific work designed for, and inspired by, Madison Square Park,” said Ms. Fernández. “My concept was to invert the traditional notion of outdoor sculpture by addressing all of the active walkways of the Park rather than setting down a sculptural element in the Park’s center. By hovering over the Park in a horizontal band, Fata Morgana becomes a ghost-like, sculptural, luminous mirage that both distorts the landscape and radiates golden light.”
The project did not have a 100 percent-smooth road to realization. Certain neighbors are “furious” that it will partly block the sky over its nine-month run, reports DNAinfo, which quotes a fuming dog walker: “It’s huge, it’s enormous, and it also looks like they’re building a shelter. This is ridiculous.” But let’s see if those people sing the same tune during the blistering, shirt-drenching heat of September.
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