new york’s fort tilden is a vast former army installation on the rockaway peninsula in queens. the natural area of beach, dunes and maritime forest surrounding are now maintained as a public park, where visitors can rest, relax and enjoy ocean views. on site, the fort’s original military buildings and facilities dot the landscape, the large part of which have now been abandoned and rendered unsuitable for use.

katharina grosse rockaway
image © designboom (also main image)

 

 

the area surrounding fort tilden was hit hard by the devastating aftermath of hurricane sandy in 2012. in celebration of the ongoing recovery of the peninsula following the destructive impact, MoMA PS1 has collaborated with the rockaway artists alliance, jamaica bay-rockaway parks conservancy, national park service, central park conservancy, NYC parks & recreation, and rockaway beach surf club to present the exhibition rockaway! on the occasion, german artist katharina grosse has realized a site-specific installation at the site’s decaying aquatics building, turning it into a monumental artwork. 

katharina grosse rockaway
photo by pablo enriquez

 

 

grosse reflects the bold and vibrant colors of sunset in the rockaways by spraying brightly colored paint directly onto the structure. her approach — which has seen her color the landscape one of philadelphia’s major transportation routes — highlights the potential of painting as a medium, and accentuates the character of this manmade structure and its natural surroundings. the installation also seeks to memorialize this iconic building, which was rendered structurally unsound by hurricane sandy in 2012 and is set to be demolished in late 2016.

katharina grosse rockaway
image © designboom

 

 

‘in 2008, I saw katharina grosse’s work for prospect.1 in new orleans, where she painted a small house that was abandoned and condemned after hurricane katrina’, said klaus biesenbach, director, MoMA PS1 and chief curator-at-large, museum of modern art.I was deeply moved that a building just waiting to be taken down was given this temporary, proud, and fragile beauty. when I heard that the aquatics building in fort tilden was to be demolished following hurricane sandy, I immediately wanted to invite katharina to do a project at the site.’

katharina grosse rockaway
photo by pablo enriquez

katharina grosse rockaway
image © designboom

katharina grosse rockaway
image © designboom

katharina grosse rockaway
image © designboom

katharina grosse rockaway
image © designboom

katharina grosse rockaway
image © designboom

katharina grosse rockaway
photo by pablo enriquez

katharina grosse rockaway
photo by pablo enriquez

katharina grosse rockaway
image © designboom