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Watershed: The Flow of Time Through Place
(7 adjoining panels) Acrylic, ink, and pigment on Evolon microfiber
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Installed June 2016: A project commissioned for The Emerson Resort and Spa of Mt. Tremper, NY, by the design firm Cama Incorporated, of New Haven, CT.
“Our senses are skeptics, and believe only the impression of the moment, and do not believe the chemical fact that these huge mountain chains are made up of gasses and rolling wind. ...All things are flowing, even those that seem immovable.”
– R.W. Emerson
(1) The geologic boundary within which water flows into a common body, also the boundary between divergent riparian systems.
(2) A metaphoric boundary in time that divides contrasting social or cultural conditions.
The glistening waters of the Esopus Creek flow here now, in this ever-fleeting present moment. But the water has not been here forever, nor the rocks and clouds. Through vast spans of time they have come to be what they now are, flowing out of the past, and into the future.
Nourishing the landscape through cycles of fire and ice, the waters have endured. Here fantastic animals have evolved and flourished, only to become extinct. Here a variety of human communities have named and claimed the land, hunted animals and grown crops, competed for wealth, power and resources. Here forests have been razed, and have grown again. Here there is still starlight, the rustle of leaves, the smell of earth.
Now the waters of the creek flow way beyond their original banks. Dammed up in the Ashokan reservoir, diverted through miles of tunnels, they have become a wellspring for the multitudes in New York City. Here is the story of this place, as it evolves and flows through time.
– Alison Berry