Public Art Fund Brings Anish Kapoor’s ‘Descension’ to Brooklyn Bridge Park

Starting this May, visitors will be able to peer into the seemingly-endless abyss. 

Anish Kapoor’s Descension. Photo courtesy Public Art Fund.
Anish Kapoor’s Descension. Photo courtesy Public Art Fund.

In celebration of its 40th anniversary, the Public Art Fund (PAF) is bringing DescensionAnish Kapoor‘s continuously swirling black whirlpool, to the scenic Brooklyn Bridge Park. It will be on view from May 3 to September 10.

The striking installation—which is 26 feet in diameter and creates what appears to be a negative space in the ground—will be situated at Pier 1 of the waterfront park, in a striking juxtaposition with the East River.

The work is made by pairing an all-natural black dye with a continuously spiraling funnel of water to produce the illusion of an ever-churning black hole.

“Through this transformation of properties inherent to materials and objects, Kapoor blurs the boundaries between nature, landscape, and art, allowing us to perceive space differently,” PAF’s release reads. “Kapoor invites us to experience the sheer perceptual wonder of an ordinary material like water made to behave in an extraordinary way.”

Descension was first exhibited in India for the Kochi-Muziris Biennale in 2014, and again in 2015 in Kapoor’s solo exhibition at the Palace of Versailles, which was marred with controversy. The New York outing will mark the first time the installation is exhibited in North America.

“Anish Kapoor reminds us of the contingency of appearances: our senses inevitably deceive us. With Descension, he creates an active object that resonates with changes in our understanding and experience of the world,” said PAF director and chief curator Nicholas Baume in a statement.

“In this way, Kapoor is interested in what we don’t know rather than in what we do, understanding that the limit of perception is also the threshold of human imagination.”


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