#InTheLoop | Living Art Piece Teams Up with the East River
BY QEDC It's In Queens
Here’s to the good life!
The opening reception for Mary Mattingly: Ebb of a Spring Tide is at Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City on Saturday, May 20, from noon to 5 pm. Admission in free.
The work’s centerpiece is a 65-foot Water Clock with edible vegetation. Fabricated on site, the mammoth structure will respond to the tides brought on by the lunar cycle. (The East River is not actually a river. It’s a brackish tidal estuary with daily highs and lows.)
Ebb of a Spring Tide will include a Flock House, an adaptable geodesic dome which will act as a growing, making, and eventual living space to fit the project’s evolving needs. Visitors will have the opportunity to engage with the Flock House throughout the summer.
“Water from the East River cyclically falls through the sculpture, and the clock accumulates brackish brine while hosting families of halophyte plants,” stated Mattingly. “With each overflow, the clock reminds me that survival is bound to the survival of one another and the earth. It reminds me of the rhythms of nature and respecting the pace of the world around us, as well as the interconnectedness of time, water, and life cycles.”
In addition to the unveiling, the opening reception will feature wildflower workshops, a visioning activity with NYC Department of City Planning, Ice Jewelry with Betsy Bamford, and papermaking with mushrooms with Roberta Trentin. DJ Vinyl Richie will spin the tunes, and attendees can peruse bites from For Love and Lemon Cookies, Gladys Bienvenida Restaurante, KAU KAU, Dan Pravit Fethke, and Taste of Surabaya.
Born in Connecticut and educated at Parsons School of Design, Mattingly is an interdisciplinary artist who likes to mix sculpture with social engagement to address ecology and consumerism. She was recently awarded a 2023 Guggenheim Fellowship in Fine Arts. Her past work includes Watershed Core and Swale, a floating edible landscape on a reclaimed barge on New York City’s waterways.
Socrates Park, which is at 32-01 Vernon Blvd., is open every day of the year from 9 am to Sunset.
Images: Courtesy of Mary Mattingly