New York City's Forgotten Waterways

December 2014 -

As 2014 comes to a close, Curbed NY has published the final installment of my recent mini-series about New York City's forgotten waterways. This series explores lesser-known waterways in all five boroughs of New York City, including Staten Island's Lemon Creek, Brooklyn's Coney Island Creek, Queens' Hook Creek and Flushing River, and the Harlem River, which flows between Manhattan and the Bronx.

As sea levels continue to rise worldwide, New York City is in the process of reconsidering its relationship with the water that surrounds it. Each of these photo essays explores a different aspect of the city's plans for the waterfront, while examining issues of pollution, flooding, resiliency and access. This series documented many the city's new waterfront parks, wetlands and marshes, while also telling the stories of communities living on the water's edge.

A link to each photo essay is included below:

- New York's Once-Neglected Harlem River Experiences a Rebirth (Sept. 2014)
- Queens Forgotten River Looks Ahead to Cleanup and Change (Oct. 2014)
- Coney Island's Untamed Creek, Caught Between Past and Future (Nov. 2014)
- Following Hook Creek Through Ghost Towns and Wetlands (Dec. 2014)
- Little-Known Lemon Creek Winds Through Staten Island History (Dec. 2014)

Photographing The Post Sandy Shoreline

October 2014 -

For the second anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, Curbed has published my three part photo essay looking at how New York City's waterfront has been transformed since the storm. This series of photo essays - collectively titled The Post-Sandy Shoreline - looks at the divergent recovery efforts in three different areas that were hardest hit by the storm - Breezy Point in the Rockaways, Sea Gate in Brooklyn and Oakwood Beach and Ocean Breeze in Staten Island.  These photo essays encompass two years of photographic work, tracking the progress made since Hurricane Sandy devastated New York's waterfront. They can be viewed at Curbed using the following links:

- Breezy Point Residents Choose to Remain and Rebuild
- Two Years On, Coney Island Enclave Still Awaits Recovery
- Residents Retreat From Staten Island's Hard-Hit Waterfront

Fluid at Newhouse Center For Contemporary Art

From May 2014 to January 2015, the Newhouse Center For Contemporary Art will be exhibiting video and sculpture from The Newtown Creek Armada as part of the group exhibit Fluid – Essential For Life. The exhibit, located at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden in Staten Island, was "inspired by the symbiotic relationship of Snug Harbor with water – from its location directly across from New York Harbor to its 10 acres of wetlands to the Koi pond at the New York Chinese Scholar’s Garden to the fountains of the Tuscan Garden and all the way back to its beginnings as a home for retired sailors."

More information on Fluid can be seen here.

Combined Overflow at Proteus Gowanus

From April 26th to May 24th, 2014, the exhibit "Combined Overflow" was on view at Proteus Gowanus in Brooklyn.  Combined Overflow was a group exhibition of creative responses to the Newtown Creek and the Gowanus Canal, two New York City waterways with similar histories of industry, pollution and neglect. Both of these salt-water inlets were designated as federal Superfund sites in 2010, and are currently undergoing remediation, even as new residents are lured to their shorelines. Both have also inspired dedicated communities of artists, innovators and explorers, who have been working to collectively recalibrate these bodies of water as fertile sites of collaboration, invention and public engagement.

Combined Overflow included 20 different projects created by artists including Wendy Andringa, Liz Barry, Sarah Christman, Willis Elkins, Eymund Diegel, Jose Gaytan, Jan Mun, Leif Percifield, George Trakas, Mitch Waxman and Jenifer Wightman, and groups including Brooklyn Atlantis, The Gowanus Canal Conservancy, The Gowanus Dredgers Canoe Club, The Newtown Creek Alliance, The Newtown Creek Armada, The North Brooklyn Boat Club, and Urban Omnibus.

Combined Overflow was curated by Nathan Kensinger, Laura Chipley and Sarah Nelson Wright of The Newtown Creek Armada. The triptych image above includes work by Jose Gaytan, Willis Elkins and Jenifer Wightman. For more information on Combined Overflow, please visit Proteus Gowanus and read this review of the exhibit at Untapped Cities.