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Massive 'Iceberg' hits Garment District this Winter, illuminates Broadway pedestrian plazas
Installation view. Photo: Alexandre Ayer.

NEW YORK, NY.- The Garment District Alliance unveiled Iceberg, an immersive art installation on the Broadway pedestrian plazas that invites the public to create their own light show through an illuminating runway. As visitors walk through the metal arches of the installation – which represent the lifecycle of an iceberg – the installation emits light and sound in rhythm with the pace of the participant.

Iceberg is located on the Garment District pedestrian plazas on Broadway between 37th and 38th Streets. The installation is free and will be open to the public through February 24th.

“This is an astonishing installation that transforms Broadway into a gleaming, interactive experience for pedestrians, while reinforcing an important environmental message,” said Barbara A. Blair, president of the Garment District Alliance. “Iceberg is a thought-provoking yet playful piece that serves as a profound reminder of the seriousness of climate change. As a neighborhood that is committed to showcasing talented artists both locally and from around the world, we are proud to welcome Iceberg to the Garment District and we encourage local New Yorkers and travelers to visit and fully immerse themselves in this experience.”

The installation tells the story of an iceberg, from its calving into Arctic waters to its final melting near a southern shore. Inspired by this monumental natural instrument, Iceberg consists of a series of illuminated metallic arches that each produce a particular sound. Arranged as a tunnel, the arches invite visitors to enter, listen to and play the giant organ, as its notes and light travel the musical corridor from end-to-end. Human activity “warms up” the ice monuments and transforms their original nature into a visual and auditory symphony.

The installation was created by ATOMIC3 and Appareil Architecture, in collaboration with Jean-Sébastien Côté and Philippe Jean. Iceberg was first presented as part of the 3rd edition of Luminothérapie at the Place des Festivals in the Quartier des Spectacles in Montreal in 2012.

“After the Arizona desert, our Iceberg landed on Broadway. What a journey! We are very curious to see how people will react and play with it in the heart of one of the busiest cities in the world,” said Félix Dagenais and Louis-Xavier Gagnon-Lebrun, co-artistic directors at ATOMIC3.

“We're proud that New Yorkers now have the opportunity to interact with the Montreal-made installation Iceberg, thanks to the strong relationship between CREOS, the Quebec art producer, and the Garment District Alliance,” said Jean Saintonge, the acting head of post at the Quebec Government Office in New York. “Climate change is a global problem that requires local action. Quebec is taking steps to reduce its carbon emissions and is also working with partners in New York to raise climate awareness and provide innovative solutions to address this urgent global issue.”

Iceberg is part of Garment District Art on the Plazas, a year-round public art program made possible through Arterventions, a subpart of the New York City Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Art Program. The Garment District Alliance and DOT Art work closely to coordinate and install exhibits and individual pieces, which enhance public plazas and make them even more welcoming to New Yorkers and visitors. Previous installations included LOOP, an immersive exhibit presented in early 2018 that invited the public to bring animated flipbook-style musical movies to life by activating large, retro-futuristic cylinders. LOOP was similarly featured as part of Luminothérapie at the Place des Festivals in the Quartier des Spectacles, during the event’s 7th edition.

“DOT Art is pleased to work with the Garment District Alliance as they brighten the dark days of winter with an artwork that the public can not only engage with by walking through, but one that changes as the public moves through it,” said DOT Assistant Commissioner of Urban Design + Art + Wayfinding, Wendy Feuer. “The Alliance’s innovative art projects, installed throughout the year, are signature projects in DOT Art’s Arterventions track.”

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