Good Bye WOW: Wind On Water
Letter to the editor by Robin DiGiammarino, NYGA President
This month our Charlestown community will say goodbye to the successful Wind On Water (WOW) public art exhibit, closing a sixteen month exhibit that highlighted our extraordinary corner of the city in the Charlestown Navy Yard.
The sculptures, created by nationally recognized sculptor Lyman Whitaker, will be dismantled after Columbus Day weekend. The thirty-two wind sculptures, of diverse heights and design, beautifully showcased our windy microclimate while delighting thousands of visitors, neighbors and friends who strolled along the Harbor Walk from Shipyard Park to Thomas Menino Park.
Installed in the spring of 2020 during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, this outdoor family -friendly exhibit provided a welcome opportunity to enjoy public art with built-in social distancing during a period of time when so many Boston venues were closed.
Donor support was vital to the success of this public art project. We thank the many friends, neighbors, community organizations and businesses for their financial support as well as approval by the Boston Art Commission and the BPDA. We appreciate the ongoing support of the City of Boston and the Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture for awarding an Opportunity Fund grant for this public art project.
We also thank our many sponsors: Boston Harbor Cruises, Boston Autoport, Charlestown Marina, Cut-Splice, Diversified Automotive, Friends of the Charlestown Navy Yard, Harborview at the Navy Yard, John Hancock, Legal Seafoods, Lundgren Management, MGH Institute of Health Professions, Residence Inn by Marriott, Spaulding Rehabilitation Network, Thayer & Associates, and The Anchor at Charlestown Navy Yard.
As we look ahead to 2022, we are inspired to continue our effort to enhance Shipyard Park and the Charlestown Navy Yard.
Robin DiGiammarino, President
Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc.
NYGA Joins New Waterfront Coalition
The Navy Yard Garden Association was recently invited by the Coalition for a Resilient and Inclusive Waterfront (CRIW) to join their diverse group of approximately 40 city-wide non-profit organizations coming together for the main purpose of increasing public accessibility and climate change resilience on the Boston waterfront. Three foundational members of CRIW include the New England Aquarium, Boston Harbor Now, and the Trustees of Reservations. A complete list of member organizations is posted on the Coalition’s website at https://www.bostonwaterfrontcoalition.org/
As reported in a Boston Globe column by Shirley Leung on June 29, 2021:
"…the coalition for a Resilient and Inclusive Waterfront is working to educate and influence candidates and voters on issues affecting Boston’s waterfront in the 2021 municipal elections.
While the group does not plan to endorse anyone, it will host a public mayoral forum on July 29 at the New England Aquarium and launch waterfront-related programming to engage the community."
Further information about the July 29th mayoral forum is in the announcement below.
Navy Yard Garden Association Announces
Night Skies Project
The Edward Ingersoll Browne Trust Fund awarded the Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc. (NYGA) a grant of $54,000 in support of an ornamental lighting installation titled Navy Yard Night Sky which will be displayed in the amphitheater at Shipyard Park beginning this spring.
At the heart of the amphitheater the new permanent exhibit will consist of four large panels of programmable mesh lighting installed between the roof beams on the second floor of the amphitheater which is adjacent to the park’s water fountain.
Zachary Lieberman, Adjunct Associate Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at the MIT Media Lab, will be the first official artist for Night Skies. He will create the initial display consisting of a string of video clips, approximately 30 seconds each and lasting from eight to ten minutes total time which will play on the mesh panels in a continuous loop from sunset to dawn.
According to MIT Media Lab’s website, Lieberman is an artist, researcher, and educator with a simple goal: he wants you surprised. In his work, he creates performances and installations that take human gesture as input and amplify them in different ways. He's been listed as one of Fast Company's Most Creative People and his projects have won the Golden Nica from Ars Electronica, Interactive Design of the Year from Design Museum London as well as listed in Time Magazine's Best Inventions of the Year. He creates artwork through writing software and is a co-creator of open Frameworks, an opensource C++ toolkit for creative coding and helped co-found the School for Poetic Computation, a school examining the lyrical possibilities of code.
Project Supervisor is Devin Quirk of Boston Planning and Development Agency. Also affiliated with the project is landscape architect Terry Savage who is the former Superintendent of Boston Harbor Park and Ruth Raphael, landscape architect for the Boston National Park Service. Paul DeRocher as technical and programming consultant will work with lighting artist Lisa Greenfield.
Jules Pieri, NYGA board member, stated that “Living in the city, residents have very little exposure to the stars. We know they are there—but we just can’t see them. The Navy Yard Night Sky installation is meant to be our own little celestial phenomenon”.
Ms. Pieri remarked that all of the lighting will point downward so there will be no light pollution and the art can be programmed to adjust to the changing patterns of the sun. It is expected to illuminate after sunset and turn off at sunrise, if not before.
Navy Yard Garden Association Launches Friends Group
May 3, 2021
The Navy Yard Garden Association (NYGA) is forming a Friends group to support its work to invigorate plantings in Shipyard Park, restore waterfront gardens, promote public art, and offer free programming throughout the Navy Yard.
Established in 2017, NYGA is an independent volunteer Section 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to revitalizing and enhancing public open spaces within the Charlestown Navy Yard, including Shipyard Park, through planning, design, programming, and implementation for the benefit of residents and visitors alike.
While Covid-19 caused health and safety restrictions on normal life, many of us have been fortunate to access nature’s beauty and healing freshness outdoors in our shared backyard.
The Navy Yard’s unique waterfront location invites us daily to walk, jog, bicycle and push strollers alongside our historic harbor. Shipyard Park continuously welcomes small gatherings of friends and family at its picnic tables, benches and Adirondack chairs. Some of us photograph the Yard’s glorious sunrises and sunsets, participate in outdoor book club meetings, and Zumba dance near the park fountain… and, amazingly, all while masked and maintaining six feet of social distance!
Despite the pandemic’s challenges, in the past year NYGA volunteers were able to partner with the National Park Service (NPS) to plant annuals at the Commandant’s House and over 600 daffodil bulbs in NPS planters and Shipyard Park. In partnership also with the Friends of Boston Harbor Now (FBHN) NYGA volunteers planted perennials at the Korean War Veterans’ Memorial. The Navy Yard Garden Instagram account grew to more than 1300 followers, NYGA improved lighting at the Shipyard Park amphitheater, and installed 24 white Adirondack chairs for public use on the Shipyard Park lawn facing the City of Boston skyline. Residents and visitors continue to enjoy the family friendly outdoor WOW wind sculpture exhibit that consists of 32 kinetic metal sculptures by Lyman Whitaker and organized by the Navy Yard Garden Association.
We invite everyone to join these efforts and become a NYGA Friend today. The rates are $25 for individuals and $50 for households. Payment may be made by check, PayPal or credit card at www.navyyardgarden.org/friends. Contributions are tax deductible to the full extent granted by law. For further information please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Robin DiGiammarino, President
Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc.
The Navy Yard Garden Association has been preparing an amazing exhibit of more than 30 kinetic sculptures since last summer – engaging with the artist and his representatives since August of last year.
It was supposed to be a grand follow-up to the giant dog sculpture show that was so popular in the Navy Yard two years ago. Then COVID-19 hit just two months before the show was to premiere – complete with a gathering and celebration in May.
Now, that has been a bit derailed, but the show must go on.
Last Thursday, the Boston Planning and Development Agency (BPDA), which controls the Navy Yard properties, authorized the Navy Yard Gardens and Leopold Galleries to install the wind sculptures in the Yard and keep the exhibit going until May 2021. It’s a license agreement that extends the public art show from its original ending in September.
“In light of COVID-19 this is welcome news for the Charlestown community,” said Gardens President Robin DiGiammarino. “As an update, we raised the necessary funds to bring 31 Lyman Whitaker sculptures to the Navy Yard. The wind sculptures will be installed at some point in the next several months and a community celebration will be held when public gatherings are once again possible.”
This sculpture exhibit is to be spread out between Piers 4 and 11 along the HarborWalk. The eight groupings of sculptures will be a destination for families looking for local, outdoor attractions to uphold social distancing, added DiGiammarino.
More information will be forthcoming when the sculptures begin to be delivered for installation.
Navy Yard Garden Association Receives Opportunity Grant
The Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc. is pleased to announce it has been awarded an Opportunity Grant in the amount of $2000 from The Mayor’s 2020 Office of Arts and Culture and the City of Boston. The Opportunity Fund supports a broad spectrum of opportunities for engaging in the arts and has as a goal that every neighborhood in Boston has access to the arts.
On May 7, 2020 the Navy Yard Garden Association, Inc. will host a Grand Opening of the "WOW: Wind on Water" sculpture exhibit created by nationally known artist Lyman Whitaker. The exhibit is free to the public and will be installed in various locations throughout the Navy Yard, including along the Boston Harbor Walk.
Thirty-one kinetic sculptures composed of diverse designs of gracefully moving metal pieces will be continually propelled by the harbor’s windy micro-climate, spinning and twirling in imaginative syncopation. The collection of sculptures will be grouped in eight sites throughout the Navy Yard.
Spinning Wheel: Navy Yard Sculpture Presentation
Promises to Be Mesmerizing
An upcoming wind-based kinetic art sculpture installation has the entire Navy Yard buzzing this summer in anticipation of the spring 2020 exhibit that will coincide with the Mayflower 2020 festivities.
The Navy Yard Garden Association has received approval from the Boston Arts Commission and the Boston Planning and Development Agency to place the kinetic art in Shipyard Park and along the Harbor next spring – a follow up to last summer’s popular ‘Big Dog’ sculpture installation in the Yard.
An installation of Lyman Whitaker’s kinetic art in the Dallas Arboretum. An installation will come to the Navy Yard in the spring of 2020.
September 12, 2020
THE CHARLESTOWN NAVY YARD PRESENTS: WIND ON WATER BY LYMAN WHITAKER
June 15, 2020
PUBLIC ART RETURNS TO THE NAVY YARD
We are thrilled to announce the WOW Wind on Water sculpture exhibit by Lyman Whitaker is on display in the Charlestown Navy Yard through May 2021. Last week thirty-one sculptures were installed within the Navy Yard from Dry Dock 2, to Shipyard Park, Pier 4, Pier 6 and Pier 11 along the Boston Harbor walk. The artist chose unique combinations of spinners for the eight sculpture groupings to reflect their location in the Navy Yard.
Sometime in the future, at a time when our community can safely gather, we will host a community celebration to celebrate the arrival of the WOW Wind On Water public art exhibit and thank our community sponsors and contributors. For now, during this time of ongoing restrictions due to the COVID 19 pandemic, please enjoy the opportunity to experience this amazing outdoor exhibit while maintaining social distancing.
LYMAN WHITAKER SCULPTURE EXHIBIT TO LAUNCH IN MAY 2020
In May 2020 the Navy Yard Garden Association will launch the public art exhibit WOW: Wind on Water by nationally recognized metal sculptor Lyman Whitaker, whose work is held in private collections and displayed at public sites across the U.S. and internationally.
Whitaker’s family friendly exhibit will showcase the Navy Yard’s windy microclimate with 31 Wind Sculptures™ of elegant designs and varying heights from approximately six to eighteen feet, spinning and delighting visitors who view the sculptures along the Harbor Walk from Shipyard Park to Menino Park.
The artist has been a practicing sculptor for over 50 years, with a unique knowledge of materials and their application. The past 30 years have primarily been focused on creating his Wind Sculptures™, each of which is produced by hand. Learn more about his work at Whitaker Studios
This outdoor sculpture exhibit is made possible by support from the Boston Planning & Development Agency and a grant from the Mayor’s Office of Arts and Culture and by the City of Boston. In addition, sponsors include corporations, friends and neighbors who have generously lent their support for the first-ever Navy Yard installation of Whitaker’s work in this unique corner of the city.