Swimming With the Fishes

I admit it: I had no idea a carousel was being built in Battery Park. It seems to have received a flurry of press in spring of 2008, back when Tribeca Citizen wasn’t even in utero. Even if I had read about it then, I probably would have forgotten about it. So for those of us who need a refresher….

• It’s called SeaGlass, and it’s being funded and overseen by the Battery Conservancy.

• In the first part of the 20th century, the New York Aquarium was at Battery Park, so an aquatic-themed carousel made historical sense. (Related: The Battery Conservancy is hoping to link Battery Park and the New York Aquarium at Coney Island with a ferry.)

• Construction is anticipated to be completed by the end of this year. You can sponsor one of the fish (images are below) for $100K, or donate $200 and you’re guaranteed “a reserved commemorative ticket for the Carousel’s premiere season, from its second month of operation through its inaugural year.” The first month is clearly being reserved for bloggers with childlike enthusiasm and other important people.

• The nautilus-shaped pavilion and original concept are by WXY Architecture + Urban Design. The carousel production concept and design are by George Tsypin Opera Factory.

• It looks really gorgeous! Check out the renderings:

The pavilion is designed in the shape of a nautilus shell.

Video imagery is projected onto the interior walls, and your motion "diffuses" the imagery.

Projections of marine life help simulate the carousel's descent to the ocean floor.

The Smart Glass panels (above and below the projected imagery) turn dark as you "descend."

The sea creatures rotate on four turntables.

Passengers sit inside the bodies of the fish, which rise as high as six feet.

The floor is reflective, so you appear to be surrounded by fish.

They're kind of psychedelic, no?

It's sort of like a rave.

Finally, here’s a video that brings it to life.


1 Comment

  1. It does look gorgeous!
    Very pretty, looking forward to seeing it irl (in real life)