Water Clocks: A Floating Sculptural Installation in the Hudson River
Curated by Aaron Levi Garvey
The Hudson Eye
August 27 – September 6, 2021
Henry Hudson Riverfront Park
Rick’s Point, Southern Slip
108 Water Street
Hudson, New York
A constellation of Daniel Rothbart’s floating sculptures were installed in the Hudson River off the southernmost slip of Henry Hudson Riverfront Park facing an industrial site. For these works, Rothbart welded aluminum arabesques around shapeshifting spheres of found glass, creating serpentine chain forms that move freely in the water.
The Covid-19 pandemic along with storms and fires linked to climate change have underscored humankind’s vulnerability to adverse consequences of manipulating nature. Five hundred million years ago, much of New York was covered in seawater. Rothbart’s sculptural works for The Hudson Eye suggest aquatic life and flora of the distant past, representing an otherness that seems foreign but not completely out of place in the river. The phantasmagorical objects may reflect creatures that are better suited to a dystopian environment of our making in the not-too-distant future.
Rothbart’s Water Clocks have origins in the distant past and implications for an uncertain future. The Hudson River site becomes the locus of reflection for where we’ve been and where we could be going.
Special thanks for Francine Hunter McGivern, Jonah Bokaer, Aaron Levi Garvey, Mike Aguiar, Julie Skrzypek, Alaina Wilson, and Anna Savino.