PYR 2014 by Don Eyles

New Temporary Public Art for Fort Point Channel: Don Eyles’ PYR 2014

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In 1998 Fort Point artist Don Eyles floated his first pyramid in Fort Point Channel, marking the water as a venue for art and opening the doors to the years of temporary public art installations to come. The installation was a bold move, made independently, and completely self-funded.

Don Eyles was selected to create a new floating sculpture, PYR 2014, for this fall’s Public Art Series in conjunction with the Fort Point Arts Community’s 35th Annual Open Studios. The launch of PYR 2014 also marks ten years of FPAC’s collaboration with Friends of Fort Point Channel on temporary public art in the Fort Point Channel.

PYR 2014 is  approximately sixteen feet square at its base, and ten feet high. Built from polystyrene (EPS), the surface ise finished to resemble granite cobbles.  The sculpture will float in the Art Basin (between Summer and Congress Street Bridges) October 12th through November 15th. The piece will then move south of the Summer Street Bridge.

Says Eyles,

“Consider the history has passed along the cobbled streets of Boston — all the men and women, famous or unremembered, who have walked and rode here, crossed our bridges, gathered in our public spaces, imported and exported, bought and sold — always with granite cobblestones beneath their feet and wheels. I have long dreamed of making this history tangible, by constructing a great pyramid from the cobblestones uprooted by the City’s recent development.

The first embodiment of this train of thought — on a modest scale — was the stone pyramid that I constructed in 1988 in the open area across from 249 A Street. It was built from over 1600 cobblestones borrowed from a pile that fortuitously appeared nearby.”

We look forward to the return of the newest version of Don Eyles’ iconic piece to the Fort Point Channel, and are working to extend the installation to last for up to five years, in varying locations along the southern end of Fort Point Channel.

Don Eyles has been a photographer and a builder since childhood, and a Fort Point artist for more than thirty years. Overlapping that period he worked on NASA projects at a MIT laboratory. He does not see a hard line between art and engineering, and that is evident in much of his art. As a photographer he exhaustively documented Boston’s biggest construction project, the Big Dig. His floating sculptures follow the procedures of a space mission: first a long period of design and then fabrication, then the launch (at a moment determined by the movement of the Moon and the tides it produces), and then the “mission,” a period of unknown length, filled with unknown vicissitudes. It is the entire process, not just the physical object that results, that interests this artist.

You can see PYR 2014  as it took shape and launched on a tumbler page:  photographer and FPAC member Denise Bosco is documenting the piece here

PYR 2014 was selected by a jury made up of arts professionals, artists, and community members. This year’s jurors were:

Louis DiBiccari Chef-owner of Tavern Road and TR Street Foods, and the founder of CREATE, a project which bridges the gap between visual and culinary arts in the city of Boston and helps foster visibility for the city’s arts community.

Lisa Knox An FPAC member artist and educator, Lisa is also the founder of Fort Point Studio School, specializing in workshops for artists and educators developing their creative potential.

Karin Goodfellow has a background in visual arts, museum education, community outreach, and project management. As Director of the Boston Art Commission for the City of Boston, she oversees both temporary and permanent public art projects in addition to educational and informational programming.

Meredyth Moses is the founder and former director of Clark Gallery in Lincoln MA. Meredyth is also an independent curator and art consultant, and a new resident of Fort Point.

Danielle Pillion was the Executive Director of the Friends of Fort Point Channel from 2009-2014, engaged in activating Fort Point Channel as a year-round destination. She has worked with FPAC on floating art in the Fort Point Channel for the past 5 years. Danielle also serves on the board of the Fort Point Arts Community.

Fort Point Art Community’s 2014 Floating Art Series is made possible by the generous support Friends of Fort Point Channel and the Fort Point Operation Board.

Friends of Fort Point Channel is a nonprofit organization committed to making the Fort Point Channel an exciting and welcoming destination for all of Boston’s residents, workforce and visitors. Friends of Fort Point Channel has partnered with The Fort Point Arts Community for the past ten years to activate the Fort Point Channel with temporary displays of public art.

The Fort Point Channel Operations Board supports FPAC’s public art series with funds from the Chapter 91 Waterways Regulations License #11419 for Russia Wharf, now Atlantic Wharf. The Fort Point Channel Operations Board is made up of representatives from the City of Boston, the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, and the Fort Point Channel Abutters Group, who oversee the implementation of public benefits required from private development along the Fort Point Channel.