Friday, December 17, 2021

Metal - The East River Roundabout Sculpture by Alice Aycock

Public Displays Of Art

Sometimes you know exactly what you want to photograph. You plan your shoot in advance and set it up to control as many variables as you can.

Sometimes you have no idea what you might photograph. You wander around until your eye spots something interesting, and then you use your skills to create an image in your style using the things that you have discovered.

Most often, photography is a hybrid of these two approaches. We have an idea of what we want to shoot, but we end up incorporating elements and conditions that we could not have foreseen.

a photo of the east river roundabout sculpture in new york by alice aycock
East River Roundabout by Alice Aycock (Detail)

When I ventured out for a walk on a clear afternoon in late May, I had no idea that Alice Aycock's 'East River Roundabout' sculpture existed. My intention was to walk along the river on the jogging path on the East River Greenway.

Unfortunately, after a few blocks, I found that the path was closed for construction and completely impassable. I doubled back across the footbridge and pondered where to go next.

a photo of a footbridge to the east river greenway daniel south photography
Footbridge To The East River Greenway - New York (2021)

I decided to walk toward the Queensboro Bridge. I noticed that a barge with a large yellow crane was moored near the bridge. I thought that I might be able to find an interesting composition combining the crane, the bridge, and perhaps a passing cable car.

a photo of a yellow crane and a cable car near the queensboro bridge in new york
Bridge, Crane, and Cable Car - New York (2021)

As I was looking for viewpoints, I noticed that I was standing in a space covered by a large, open metal structure.

The structure didn't appear to have a clear purpose. It looked as though it might have been the skeleton of a building that was being assembled. Parts of it looked like gears or tracks that might have been part of the machines that drove the cable cars.

a photo of alice aycock east river roundabout sculpture in new york
East River Roundabout Sculpture by Alice Aycock - New York (2021)

People were hanging out under the sculpture, talking, reading the paper, browsing their phones. Some took in the view, took selfies and group shots. Families with children were playing ball. Every few minutes, the Roosevelt Island Tram would pass silently overhead.

a photo of the roosevelt island tram cable cars near the queensboro bridge
Roosevelt Island Tram Cable Cars - New York (2021)

Art encourages new perspectives. Surprises make the journey fun.

Fujifilm GFX 100S
Lenses: GF 80mm f/1.7 
            GF 45mm f/2.8
            GF 23mm f/4

Light happens. Be ready. Shoot hard.
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