As The Evolution of God by Adrián Villar Rojas prepares to leave the High Line, we take a look at some photos of the sculptures throughout the seasons.
It is remarkable that an entire year has passed since artist Adrián Villar Rojas unveiled his site-specific sculptural work The Evolution of God on the High Line in September 2014. The work opened on the occasion of the opening of the High Line at the Rail Yards, the third and northern-most section of the park.
The artist inaugurated the public opening of the High Line at the Rail Yards with minimalist-inspired cubes packed with a cocktail of organic and inorganic elements. Added to his mixture of cement, clay, and soil were materials that Villar Rojas chose to eventually disintegrate. From the moment of their installation, the sculptures began to lean toward their final disintegration while still maintaining the novelty of constant transformation. In effect, Villar Rojas's sculptures oscillate between the past, present, and future. During the installation of the work, the artist said of these organic elements: "This is the basics of life on earth. Inside you have all these tiny things that are happening, going back to billions of years ago when the first primitive organisms appeared. This is it. This is the primordial soup." With the addition of inorganic elements like sneakers or rope, the cubes also become compact trailers for a future film. The cubes constantly shift and change, activating the past while embarking on an unknown future.
For the piece, Villar Rojas was inspired by the wild self-seeded landscape of the High Line. The High Line – a former railway line turned elevated park – was the perfect setting for a work that revealed man's interference with the natural world. The sculptures' mix of ingredients also works as an apt commentary on mankind's ecological footprint: how the contemporary artifacts of our climate of consumption are inevitably entangled in nature.
Set against the backdrop of New York City, the cubes nod to the surrounding environment. While public art is often characterized by its massive scale,
The Evolution of God is surprisingly fragile: its steady disintegration contrasts with the steel spines of the encircling skyscrapers. Over time, the sculptures have slowly returned to the wild landscape of the High Line, revealing the passage of time through spouting plants and cracking concrete. The time-driven inevitability of the work's disintegration is a firm reminder of the ephemerality of even the most towering buildings, and undermines the idea of a seemingly imperishable metropolis like New York.
The Evolution of God will be on view at the High Line at the Rail Yards through August 16, 2015.