Year One Year Two
June 2016 - July 2017
A group show in the forest of Neversink, NY featuring work by Jacky Connolly, Max Guy, Clark Filio, Travis Hallenbeck, Abby Lloyd, Anny Oberlink, Filip Olszewski, Adriana Ramić, Kyle Richardson, Betty Roytburd, Kat Schneider, Sydney Shen, Amanda Wong
Following the eviction of its human inhabitants, the aptly-named hamlets of Old Neversink and Bittersweet, nestled in a valley of the Catskill Mountains, were condemned and flooded in 1953. Anticipating a period of growth and prosperity following World War II, city planners considered the flat-basin as an ideal site for one of New York City’s several new reservoirs. Within two years, the ill-fated townships were completely submerged, the City having quenched its thirst for expansion with the tributary flows.
The reservoir is protected by a shield of hemlocks, rooted over 700 years ago. These trees have borne witness to the flooding of the towns, as well as a succession of societies, each one built on the foundations laid by its predecessors. These woods nurture both growth and decay: Young ferns unfurl from decomposing carcasses of once thriving predators. Humans go through similar cycles, yet our current distance from Neversink, Bittersweet, and the forests–with their muteness, compared to the clamor of cities–lulls us into illusions of permanence and stability. The forest, an entanglement of biological and mythological matter, shows us that as in a natural equilibrium, destruction and regeneration are integral to being.
Participants of Neversink Woods–13 artists currently based in New York City–were invited to create temporal work for the forest, and to consider leaving their piece to revisit after one year. Over the course of the year, the man-made objects–growing moss or morphing into the dry leaves and earth–will inevitably and fantastically be reclaimed by nature.
Organized by Betty Roytburd and Anny Oberlink; Text by Anny Oberlink
Special thanks to Maggie Prendergast, Ming Lin, Justin Clark, and Cosmo Bjorkenheim