Waterpod: Autonomy and Ecology, the sixth exhibition of the SEA (Social Envrionmental Aesthetics) program, is a survey of the Waterpod’s five-month voyage around the boroughs of New York. It includes videos, photographs, relics, art works, journal entries, and ephemera that tell the story of this unusual public art project.
The Waterpod was a floating, sculptural structure designed as a futuristic habitat and an experimental platform for assessing the design and efficacy of living systems fashioned to create an autonomous, fully functional marine shelter.
A New York-based multinational team, led by founder and artistic director Mary Mattingly, drew upon the talents of artists, designers, builders, civic activists, scientists, environmentalists, and marine engineers to bring this cross-disciplinary collaboration to fruition in the waterways of New York City. During a global recession and within strict government guidelines, the Waterpod managed to achieve new ways of community outreach, resource sharing, and art creation.
To fortify against the possibility of widespread climate change, desertification, overpopulation, and rising sea levels, the Waterpod offered a pathway to sustainable survival, mobility, and community building through a free, participatory project and event space that visited the five boroughs and Governors Island, for a voyage lasting from June to October 2009. The Waterpod’s mission has been to prepare, inform, and offer alternatives to current and future living spaces.
Organized by Ian Daniel and Mary Mattingly.
The Waterpod was featured in media around the world, including publications and television stations such as ABC, NBC, BBC, NPR, Fox News, Voice of America, The New York Times, Time Out New York, The New Yorker Magazine, The Financial Times, Sculpture Magazine, ArtForum, Le Monde Magazine, CITY Magazine, Discover Magazine, Nature Magazine, The Brooklyn Paper, and many others.