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New Year Geometries

Posted on: Wednesday, January 03, 2007

The New Year brings promise in the form of new shapes, new ideas, and the irony of the old-made-new. ‘Burgeoning’ is a word typically reserved for buds emerging in the spring, but in early January 2007, there are signs that organic growth is springing forth, even in the depths of an urban winter.

One such example is 'Burgeoning Geometries: Constructed Abstractions', currently on view at The Whitney Altria. This exhibit is indeed an oasis of form regeneration and sculptural craft in the no-man’s art land of midtown. My favorite piece is Phoebe Washburn’s, Minor In-House Brain Storm (2006), a sculptural installation featuring recycled scrap wood from her previous projects constructed around a gurgling spring of lit green growth and colored rocks.

With warmer temperatures currently prevailing in the Northeast, the term ‘burgeoning’ has had rather disturbing connotations. I actually spied a cherry tree sending forth blossoms in the park this week.

The Brooklyn Museum (now free for visitor during the weekdays through February 2007) has signs of budding activity and micro-gardening events all winter long.

The Bonsai Room is a meditative journey on a sun-kissed afternoon.

These are controlled abstractions of the most ancient kind.

The Botanical Garden's Aquatic House is also teeming with tropical warmth and epiphyte splendor. Winterberries and succulents are winter-sustainable in their exquisite color and texture - proof perhaps that geometry prevails when the temperatures are unpredictable and the climate calendar deceives us.

For more information on The Whitney Altria's exhibits,
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For more information on visiting The Brooklyn Botanical Gardens,
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