With the weather getting warmer and more picturesque, the opportunities to sit outside and enjoy spring are increasing — and soon there will be a new art installation in Jamaica to provide passersby with an opportunity to do that.
The large, wavy, bumble-bee-colored structure entitled “Humps and Bumps” employs whatthe Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning calls “the iconic patterns of theurbanspeed bump.” JCAL commissioned it in furtherance of its mission to bring art to the community and encourage more tourists to visit the area.
The art installation will be placed at the corner of Archer Avenue and Union Hall Street. Construction will start in approximately three to four weeks and the unveiling is expected to happen in April, according to Heng-Gil Han, curator at JCAL. The structure will remain there for about one year.
“It is a bank that people can sit on,” Han told attendees at the March 21 Community Board 12 meeting. “We intentionally wanted the stop sign there so people wouldn’t walk past, but stop and sit.”
The sculpture will be eight feet wide, 10 feet long and four feet high at its highest point. It will cost $5,000, according to Han. JCAL obtained the funds from the city Department of Transportation’s Urban Arts Program.
A group of five artists known as BroLab of Bushwick, Brooklyn came up with the neon yellow-and-black-striped design. It was one of many ideas JCAL presented to the DOT, before the agency settled on that one and then chose the location, Han said. The area was selected because it attracts little pedestrian traffic and the art addition was seen as a way to change that.
The sculpture will be made of wood with a thick rubber coating, similar to the padding found at playgrounds, and will weigh several hundred pounds. There will be a plaque crediting JCAL for its installation. The parts will be constructed first and then they will be assembled on site, Han said.
The DOT is taking care of any city requirements for putting it outside, but Han contacted CB 12 and the area police precincts to make them aware that the art would be arriving soon.
No one at the board meeting objected to the installation. Member James Heyliger, however, was concerned before seeing the design that it might not fit in with its surroundings, but was content after being shown a rendering. Another board member grumbled quietly that the sculpture was aesthetically unappealing.
Asked if he is concerned that the structure might be vandalized, Han replied, “It’s art and people in the community respect that. We have done other projects and there has not been any noticeable vandalism.”