Just before the start of summer the NYC Department of Transportation called for artists to submit a design for a semi-temporary installation for the newly pedestrianized Times Square. The city received numerous submissions, but it was artist Molly Dillworth’s entry, 'Cool Water, Hot Island,' that grabbed the coveted first prize. Now just a few months later, Dillworth’s aptly-named installation recently received its finishing touches and has since taken its proper place, center stage on Broadway! Depicting painted blue swirls surrounding a sand colored island, her final design has become an incredible gesture embodying the fresh spirit of this newfound escape. Not only does the eye-catching piece give its visitors a chance to breathe easy within one of Manhattan's busiest districts, but it also offers a welcome contrast to the commotion and flashing lights of Times Square. Eager for a chance to get our feet 'wet,' our reporters recently took a dive and snapped some photos of the new urban oasis -- click ahead for an exclusive look at Molly Dilworth's 'Cool Water, Hot Island!'
What appears to be a nondescript desert island is actually a painted reproduction of Manhattan based on NASA’s infrared satellite data. The ‘Hot Island’ represents Manhattan, reflecting the heat given off by building density. The waves of blue ‘Cool Water’ signify the cooler surrounding rural areas of the city. The painting’s light shades of blue both reflect and absorb the perfect amount of sunlight to provide a comfortable experience for visitors.
The installation will remain in place until the Times Square revitalization plan commences in 2012.
Photos: Jill Fehrenbacher and Hannah-Clare Gordon