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It’s a goodgood thing…

We were the recipients of some very nice praise about our recent installation, Joy, from the blog, Dress for Sports. Thanks, Mary! We’ve reposted it below:
It’s a goodgood thing…

As I described in my previous post, joy was present this December in many more ways than one.

On December 21st, it was an integral component in “What Brings You Joy?; a question posed to the public in the Chinatown Parks as part of the Greenway’s Bright Lights for Winter Nights celebrations. That same evening, a few blocks over in the Fort Point Channel Parks, joy no longer was presented as part of an open ended artistic question – but rather featured as an elegant exclamation created by goodgood’s Karen Stein with help from Ben Gaydos and Matthew Shanley.

An installation that delighted and surprised all who strolled through that particular section of the Greenway – “joy” transformed the normally barren winter landscape into an otherworldly field of glowing, glittery fallen stars.It was an extraordinary expression of cosmic wonder right there at my feet, and as I entered the park in front of the Intercontinental Hotel – I stood still and spun around to soak in the full effect of the sparkling terrain. Its lifespan may have been just a few short hours, but boy was “joy” heavenly.

As detailed in the artist statement, ““joy” is a one-night outdoor lighting installation made up of 1,000 freestanding LED lights. These lights glimmer on the Rose Kennedy Greenway landscape, creating a constellation here on earth, spelling out a simple message of the season.”

How did such a stellar, celestial project find its way to Bright Lights for Winter Nights? Well, my discussions with goodgood began shortly before Thanksgiving, when I sent emails of inquiry to a few local artists with whose work I had become familiar over the past few months. The goal? To gauge interest in participating in an outdoor installation project (aka Bright Lights for Winter Nights) with some pretty tricky parameters, not the least of which was a need for artworks that utilized solar powered lights or battery powered LEDs (and thus would glow in an area of the Greenway in which electric power is non-existent).Not surprisingly, while all of the artists I emailed expressed great interest in future collaborations of this kind, the criteria was proving too prohibitive, especially given the time of year (which was completely reasonable and to be expected). And then, there was goodgood

Curious about the project and game to brainstorm, Karen Stein eagerly engaged in an email dialogue with me about a variety of dazzling ideas. While goodgood didn’t have anything in their studio that met the goals of Bright Lights for Winter Nights, they definitely were interested in pursuing a conversation. I explained that as a fall back, it could be fun to create a kind of illuminated rose garden out of solar powered lawn decorations (which I thought would cleverly allude to the Greenway’s namesake). But before long, goodgood was off and running with a smattering of their own great ideas, and “joy” emerged the victor.

In fact, it was this installation’s theme that inspired the prompt for “What Brings You Joy? Once it was determined that “joy” was going to be the anchor installation in the Fort Point Channel Parks, I suggested that it might be nice to find a way to connect its message with the participatory light graffiti projection in the Chinatown Parks. Thanks to Kate Miller’s great guidance and prompt, the full circle Bright Lights concept was born.

Those who missed “joy” missed an experience straight out of the fantastic. But with a little luck and encouragement, “joy” hopefully can be reprised and enjoyed on the Greenway where it will make bright the night and warm a few hearts on special evenings yet to come.

Karen Stein