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Thread: Waterfalls coming to the East River

  1. #31
    Forum Veteran MidtownGuy's Avatar
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    Too many metal bars.

  2. #32
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    What do you expect to get for $50,000,000.00

  3. #33

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    Guide to Viewing the Waterfalls

    By CONRAD MULCAHY
    Published: June 27, 2008

    “The New York City Waterfalls,” Olafur Eliasson’s work of public art, will be even more public than “The Gates” were. After all, you had to go to Central Park to see “The Gates.”



    For many New Yorkers, and visitors to New York, it will be hard to miss the waterfalls, which officially opened Thursday and run until Oct. 13. The work consists of four scaffoldings, ranging between 90 and 120 feet tall, dotted along the Brooklyn, Manhattan and Governors Island waterfronts.

    Water will cascade from these scaffoldings every day, beginning most mornings at 7 (Tuesdays and Thursday at 9 a.m.), and will go silent each night at 10. The waterfalls will be lighted after the sun sets and will draw their water from the East River.

    No matter how you choose to see the waterfalls — by boat, train, bicycle or on foot — Public Art Fund and the city have a plan in place for you (first stop: nycwaterfalls.org). A temporary park has been created on Pier 1, a site of the future Brooklyn Bridge Park, for waterfall viewing. The falls will also be visible from the back of a cab mired in endless rush hour traffic on any number of waterfront roadways. But there’s no official word on that.

    Views From the Water
    Circle Line Downtown is running special boat tours. While the waterfalls will be visible from several of the Circle Line cruises that originate from South Street Seaport, there is also a 30-minute tour, which focuses solely on the four installations. Thirteen of these 30-minute waterfall cruises will be run daily, with the first departure at 9 a.m. and the last ride leaving Pier 16 at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are available at the Pier 16-17 ticket kiosk at South Street Seaport, from the Circle Line Downtown Web site (circlelinedowntown.com/waterfalls.asp ) or by telephone at (866) 925-4631.

    Tickets are $10; $9 for 63+ and $5 for children 4 to 12. A limited number of free tickets will be available, by telephone only, for every cruise. There is a limit of one order per household. The best seat on these water tours is the top deck of the larger of the two boats, the Zephyr. Seating is first come first served.

    Mr. Eliasson recorded an introduction that will be played on the cruise, setting the stage for viewers by highlighting, for example, “the way the water rocks the boat,” and “the way you see the city from the water,” as well as offering thoughts on the importance of public art. The introduction is like having a quiet conversation with Mr. Eliasson at the start of your journey, before he quietly fades away to let his art do the talking.

    Bicycle Views
    A dedicated bike path has been marked for those who want to tour the falls on two wheels; a map is available online at nyc.gov/html/misc/pdf/bike_the_falls_map.pdf.

    The bike route on the map begins at the base of the Brooklyn Bridge on the Manhattan side, crosses the bridge, wends through Brooklyn Heights and the downtown area before it sends the rider back across the Manhattan Bridge. At the end of the Manhattan Bridge the route ducks through a corner of Chinatown and then sends the rider down the east side of the island, finishing at the South Ferry station, where a ferry to Governors Island is available.

    The bike path is marked throughout with blue chevrons and waterfalls logos painted onto the street, but their scarcity at times can lead to some confusion. Make sure to bring a copy of the map itself. When in doubt, follow established bike lanes (especially in the section through downtown Brooklyn and to the Manhattan Bridge).

    While you could cover the bike route in around 90 minutes, it would be a shame to do so. Plan on spending a lazy afternoon visiting the viewing sites and enjoying the many strata of the New York that you’ll be riding through. And don’t feel anchored to the bike path’s starting and ending points. It’s easy to ride pieces of the route, or to do it in any order that suits you.

    Bike and Roll, a bicycle rental and tour company, offers waterfalls tours daily from Pier 17, South Street Seaport, at 3 and 6:30 p.m. The cost is $40 per person, including bike and helmet rental. For reservations call (866) 736-8224. Friday through Sunday, this weekend only, the guided tours, including the bike rentals, will be free. Reservations must be made in advance; space is limited. On Governors Island, Fridays through Oct. 4, adult and children’s bicycles are available free for one hour with a photo ID or credit card. Free limited bicycle loaners are also available through October through the Downtown Alliance at Pier 17; hours and reservations: downtownny.com/bikearound.

    Accidental Viewing
    There are many other spots where you’ll catch a glimpse of the falls in the normal course of a day. From the Staten Island Ferry. From the Governor’s Island Ferry. (Both are free.) From a Manhattan-bound D or B train. From a Brooklyn-bound N or Q train. As Mr. Eliasson tells passengers in his recorded introduction for the Circle Line: “The journey itself is something that I would claim is a part of the project. It’s a part of the artwork.”

    Food With a View
    HARBOUR LIGHTS, South Street Seaport, Pier 17, third floor, Lower Manhattan, (212) 227-2800; seafood specialties served until 10 p.m. weekdays, 11 p.m. weekends.

    BATTERY GARDENS, inside Battery Park, opposite 17 State Street, Lower Manhattan, (212) 809-5508; indoor and outdoor dining till 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday (drinks till 11), and 3 p.m. Sunday.

    BROOKLYN ICE CREAM FACTORY, next to River Cafe, 1 Water Street, near Old Fulton Street, Brooklyn, (718) 246-3963. Open till 10 p.m. Sundays through Wednesdays and 11 p.m. Thursdays to Sundays.

    RIVER CAFE, 1 Water Street, Brooklyn, (718) 522-5200; last dinner seating at 11 p.m.; the terrace room, a casual space, is open for drinks till about midnight on nights when it is not booked for private parties.

    More Eliasson
    This is the last weekend to see “Take Your Time: Olafur Eliasson,” a retrospective of his work, at the Museum of Modern Art through Monday. More information is available at moma.org or by phone at (212) 708-9400.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/27/ar...n/27bwate.html#

    Copyright 2008 The New York Times Company

  4. #34
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    Cascades, Sing the City Energetic


    Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times
    Waterfall under the bridge: A side view of an installation by Olafur Eliasson
    at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge, on the Brooklyn side.

    NY TIMES
    By ROBERTA SMITH
    June 27, 2008

    Art Review

    When Walt Whitman crossed the East River on the Brooklyn Ferry, the sheer ecstasy of the trip made him see the future. It was us, the coming generations of urban dwellers who would draw the same energy he did from his wonderful town and its waterways.

    Whitman imagined an essence of city life that is still palpable — and intoxicating — no matter how many changes we lament. But I doubt he could have conjured one thing that we can see for the next three and a half months: the waterfalls in our midst.

    Four of them, to be exact. Together they form a mammoth work of shoreline land art called “The New York City Waterfalls.” It is the brainchild of the Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson working with the tireless Public Art Fund and a host of public and private organizations and donors. Between 90 and a 120 feet high and up to 80 feet across, they cascade into Whitman’s beloved East River from four dense, plumbed scaffolding structures on or just off the coasts of Manhattan, Brooklyn and Governors Island, making some of New York’s most thrilling waterside vistas more so.

    Sometimes Mr. Eliasson’s falls are almost miragelike, especially after dark, when unobtrusive lighting makes them shimmer white against the muffled cityscape. It is at night that you have the greatest chance of hearing them from a distance, otherwise the rush of water is drowned out by the city. But their quiet heightens their strangeness, day or night. It is as if they were in their own movie, a silent one. And in a way they are. They could almost fool King Kong into thinking he is back home. They are the remnants of a primordial Eden, beautiful, uncanny signs of a natural nonurban past that the city never had.


    Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times
    A view from near by the Pier 35 installation.

    Sometimes when the wind is brisk, and the steel scaffolding is especially visible, the falls inspire more nuts-and-bolts associations. They can send the mind to the Cyclone of Coney Island and those towers from which daredevil riders and their hapless steeds used to jump, or to old Times Square with its ambitious billboards. If you get really close to them, you’ll see that the water is carried upward by what are essentially common New York apartment-building plumbing risers (18 inches in diameter, and occurring every 10 feet across).


    Photo: Vincent Laforet for The New York Times


    Photo: Vincent Laforet for The New York Times

    The waterfalls run every day, from morning until 10 at night. Which is to say that they can be turned off, unlike the city that never sleeps. (They do turn off automatically if the wind is too strong.) Unlike real waterfalls, they continuously recirculate river water, meaning that they are, technically speaking, fountains. In the same vein the work’s very title is an oxymoron. After all, it was the relative dearth of real waterfalls that fostered New York’s nearly instant success and glamour as a port city.

    But “The New York City Waterfalls” is also one of the largest works of art, public or otherwise, of our modern era. (Let’s not get in a shouting match with ancient civilizations, where autocratic rule made all sorts of things possible.) The piece is an heir to the monumental site-specific artworks whose most spectacular examples were made (and in some cases still are being made) in the distant reaches of the Nevada and Utah deserts starting in the late 1960s and the ’70s by earth artists like Robert Smithson, Walter De Maria, James Turrell and Michael Heizer. Ever since, younger, less isolationist artists have figured out ways to do something similar in the urban environment, within reach of a large public. In this they have followed the example of Christo and Jeanne-Claude, whose 2005 “Gates” ostentatiously swathed Central Park in orange.

    The waterfalls are an astounding feat of engineering, municipal coordination and fund-raising (given their $15 million price tag). But they are also actually relatively unobtrusive and brilliantly insidious. They go against the grain of the often spectacular nature of quite a bit of the best-known public art, including some made by Mr. Eliasson himself.

    Mr. Eliasson likes to think big about ways to enhance the experience of light, space, scale, nature and community. His best known work is the 2003 “Weather Project,” an immense installation of the jaw-dropping kind. Using bright yellow fluorescent lights behind a scrim and a mirrored ceiling, it created an immense glowing sun on the end wall of Tate Modern’s vast Turbine Hall, while also mechanically adding bits of mist and fog to the view.

    For months Londoners basked in the work’s artificial glow, often while stretched out on the ground gazing up at their tiny reflections. Sometimes they collaborated on performance pieces visible to everyone, arranging their prone bodies in words of greeting or protest or in abstract designs. Some people hated the work, seeing it as a dwarfing spectacle with fascist overtones; others complained that it turned the museum into a giant playpen.

    Here Mr. Eliasson takes a more subtle tack. The falls don’t bowl you over or dwarf you until you get close to them, and even then not always. Mostly they accumulate in a way art purists may welcome with buzzwords like “de-centering” and “discursive.” Despite its size, the work has to be assembled and reassembled by individual viewers who will see its parts from hundreds of different vantage points along the river.


    Photo: Ruth Fremson/The New York Times


    Photo: Ruth Fremson/The New York Times

    Even when you go to one of the places where all four waterfalls are visible at once, the spectacular character of the piece builds slowly. From the top level of the Pier 17 building in the South Street Seaport, for example, the widest fall, spouting from beneath the Brooklyn Bridge and veiling the Brooklyn-side pylon in sheets of white water, is easy enough to spot. The others , smaller and more distant, must be picked out one by one. To the right, the second Brooklyn falls, on the Brooklyn Piers, can almost get lost in the jumble of buildings. Up river a bit the Manhattan falls stand out on the short Pier 35 yet seem a little dwarfed, like a water slide without its slide. To the far right, the falls on Governors Island are especially beautiful. Rising above the relatively low-lying profile like a tropical vision, they seem to waiting for the jungle to grow up around them.


    Photo: Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times


    Photo: Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times


    Photo: Nicole Bengiveno/The New York Times

    The experience of Mr. Eliasson’s artful addition to the urban landscape depends on everything around it — the city’s changing pace, light and (real) weather. And on you. The falls can be looked at from near or far, alone or in groups, on foot or bike, from boats and bridges, in snatched glimpses on the move or staying-in-place contemplation. They fake natural history with basic plumbing, making little rips in the urban fabric through which you glimpse hints of lost paradise and get a sharpened sense of Whitman’s, the one you already inhabit.


    Photo: Vincent Laforet for The New York Times

    Copyright 2008The New York Times Company

  5. #35

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    I Was In Brooklyn and Downtown today and snapped these shots of the waterfalls (All 4)


    The Waterfalls at Pier 35 (Lower East Side) From the Brooklyn Bridge:



    The Waterfalls at Pier 35 (Lower East Side) From South Street Seaport:



    The Waterfalls at Brooklyn Piers from South Street:





    The Waterfalls Under The Brooklyn Bridge From South Street Seaport:



    The Waterfalls at Governors Island From South Street Seaport:



    From Battery Park:


  6. #36
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    I'm guessing that it is most effective at night, when it is illuminated.

  7. #37
    Build the Tower Verre antinimby's Avatar
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    I think if people go in thinking they're going to see Niagara Falls, they're going to be disapppointed.

    It just doesn't have that kind of water volume.

    Instead, people should look at these as large scale art displays and then they'll be more likely to appreciate them.

  8. #38
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    I agree with the nay-sayers.

    It looks like a bunch of scaffolding with water coming off of them, which it essentially IS.

    I though there would be some sort of cladding or something to hide the utilitarian skeleton that does not match with either the intended resemblance (nature) or the backdrop (classical civil structures).

    And I fail to see how this will, as some politicians have said, bring in money. I would not come to NY just because of these. People will go to see them, but only if they are in the area to begin with.



    I also agree with BR, I think they will look better at night, where all you (are supposed to) see is the backlit water.

    $50m??!? How the HELL do these things cost that much money????

  9. #39
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    One report I heard I thought said $50M, but the one above says $15M.

    Maybe it's my ears.

    But it's paid for by contributions to the Public Art Fund and out of Myor Bloomberg's pocket, so what's the gripe there?

    And why on earth would one hide the mechanisms which create the fountains? It's part of the fascination and wonder.

    Also, I've seen folks interviewed who flew-in to NYC precisely to view The Waterfalls. Just as folks came to see Christo & Jean Claude's The Gates in CP a few years back.

    Some folks travel to hear a band. Others to watch a sporting event.

    And then there are the art groupies, who abound. How else does one explain Bilbao?

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    Quote Originally Posted by antinimby View Post
    I think if people go in thinking they're going to see Niagara Falls, they're going to be disapppointed.

    It just doesn't have that kind of water volume.

    Instead, people should look at these as large scale art displays and then they'll be more likely to appreciate them.
    agreed want to see a true natural waterfall go to Niagara. I was at the seaport last night for a event, took a look at the BK bridge one and said unique but i wouldnt go crazy over it either.

  11. #41

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    Eliasson's The Weather Project from 2003 at the Tate Modern was much more sublime.



    http://www.flickr.com/photos/theblackstock/2567324022/

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2003/oct/16/arts.artsnews

  12. #42
    Forum Veteran MidtownGuy's Avatar
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    Must have been incredible to see it in person.

  13. #43
    Build the Tower Verre antinimby's Avatar
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    And blinding, too.

  14. #44
    Chief Antagonist Ninjahedge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lofter1 View Post
    One report I heard I thought said $50M, but the one above says $15M.

    Maybe it's my ears.

    But it's paid for by contributions to the Public Art Fund and out of Myor Bloomberg's pocket, so what's the gripe there?
    $15M or $50M could be spent in many different ways. Some practical, some artistic and the two don't necessarily need to conflict with each other.

    I never said "our" money is being spent, but that mush money being spent could be used elsewhere for more than leaking scaffolding.

    And why on earth would one hide the mechanisms which create the fountains? It's part of the fascination and wonder.
    I guess when you walk to work looking at scaffolding every day, there is no wonder. For me at least. Looks like a stanadrd modularized cross braced stainless steel scaffolding with some large water pumps at the bae and a diffuser at the top.

    Yipee.

    Also, I've seen folks interviewed who flew-in to NYC precisely to view The Waterfalls. Just as folks came to see Christo & Jean Claude's The Gates in CP a few years back.
    And how many would that be? If these falls did not have the artists name on it, would these people still have come?

    Some folks travel to hear a band. Others to watch a sporting event.

    And then there are the art groupies, who abound. How else does one explain Bilbao?
    A desire to be one of teh ones that thinks that saying you have seen his stuff somehow means that you are a better person because you did so.

    Agreed that some people will see a show, or get a product, based more on name than on actual merit, but this, to one that does not know this artist from Adam, is a very poor showing for the money.

  15. #45
    The Dude Abides
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    It was 15M to build. I believe the 50M number was an estimate of economic activity generated for the city.

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