High Line Blog

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Author: 
Andi Pettis
Photo by Friends of the High LineAllium atropurureum is the gothic beauty rising above the bright and cheerful blooms in the Chelsea Grasslands of the High Line. Photo by Friends of the High Line.
 

The High Line’s planting design is inspired by the self-seeded landscape that grew up between rail tracks after the trains stopped running in the 1980s. Today, the High Line includes more than 300 species of perennials, grasses, shrubs, and trees – each chosen for their hardiness, adaptability, diversity, and seasonal variation in color and texture. Some of the species that originally grew on the High Line’s rail bed are reflected in the park landscape today.

This week we share one of our gardeners’ current favorites with you.

Author: 
Ashley Tickle
Photo by Timothy SchenckPhoto by Timothy Schenck
 

There are only a few days left to see artist’s Faith Ringgold’s fun and colorful High Line Billboard, Groovin High, next to the High Line at West 18th Street.

Faith Ringgold is a painter, writer, speaker, mixed media sculptor, and performance artist working in Englewood, New Jersey. Since the early 1960s, Ringgold has been known since for her story quilts, politically charged paintings and prints, and illustrated children’s books. She has eloquently articulated a critical perspective on American identity through the lenses of the feminist and civil rights movements. Her boldly colorful geometric compositions point to influences from early American and European Modernism, dhakas – richly brocaded Tibetan paintings – and African masks. Her choice of the quilt as her primary medium in later years reflects a fundamental connection to practicality and her ancestors' feminine crafts.

For the High Line, Ringgold revisited her colorful and paradigmatic story quilt Groovin High (1986), one of the many story quilts Ringgold created that inspired a revival of the medium in the late 1970s. Depicting a crowded dance hall bordered by quilted hand-dyed fabrics, Groovin High is evocative of Ringgold’s memories of Sunday afternoon dances at the Savoy and her connection to the African American communities of her native Harlem. Her style reflects formal treatments of shape, color, and perspective reminiscent of many painters whose styles defined the Harlem Renaissance, an immensely productive and creative cultural movement of the 1920s that erupted out of the African American community living in the eponymous New York neighborhood.

Groovin High will be on view through June 2 and is located within the Edison ParkFast parking lot next to the High Line at West 18th Street and 10th Avenue.

You can also visit Ringgold’s mosaic Flying Home: Harlem Heroes and Heroines (Downtown and Uptown) at the 125th Street 2/ 3 subway station.

See more photographs of Groovin High below.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
Photo by Liz LigonPhoto by Liz Ligon
 

During this time of year, as plants almost rush to spring forth from the soil, the High Line's gardeners are working hard to keep the planting beds in tip-top shape.

Throughout the season, our gardeners are weeding, introducing new plants, pruning, adding beneficial insects, watering, and doing so much more. If it weren't for their steadfast attention to detail and care for the gardens, the High Line wouldn't be as beautiful. We'd like to take this opportunity to recognize them for the work that they do keep the High Line an amazing place to visit. Thank you!

Author: 
Andi Pettis
Photo by Eddie CrimminsPrized for its quiet beauty and rich fragrance, dwarf azalea (Rhododendron atlanticum) blooms from mid-May through June. Photo by Eddie Crimmins
 

The High Line’s planting design is inspired by the self-seeded landscape that grew up between rail tracks after the trains stopped running in the 1980s. Today, the High Line includes more than 300 species of perennials, grasses, shrubs, and trees – each chosen for their hardiness, adaptability, diversity, and seasonal variation in color and texture. Some of the species that originally grew on the High Line’s rail bed are reflected in the park landscape today.

This week we share one of our gardeners’ current favorites with you.

Author: 
Ashley Tickle
Photo by Timothy SchenckEd Ruscha’s High Line Commission Honey, I Twisted Through More Damn Traffic Today is the artist’s first public art commission in New York City. All photos by Timothy Schenck.
 

Cecilia Alemani, the Donald R. Mullen Jr. Curator & Director of High Line Art talks about legendary artist Ed Ruscha’s first public commission in New York City.

Can you tell us about Ed Ruscha’s commission for the High Line, which opened in early May?
It is the first time that Ed Ruscha is presenting his work in a public space in New York City. The project consists of a large-scale mural painted on the side of an apartment building overlooking the High Line at West 22nd Street. The mural recites “Honey, I Twisted Through More Damn Traffic Today,” and it is a reinterpretation of a 1977 pastel drawing of the same title. The mural is quite large, measuring 30 x 50 feet.

Author: 
Jennette Mullaney
Photo by Steven SeveringhausVisitors take in the moon while sitting on the Philip A. and Lisa Maria Falcone Flyover, the elevated walkway on the High Line between West 25th and West 27th Streets. If you'd like to observe the heavens through high-powered telescopes, join us for stargazing with the Amateur Astronomers Association. This free event is held in the park each Tuesday evening, weather permitting, from April through October. Photo by Steven Severinghaus
 

The High Line is an urban oasis, with an emphasis on "urban" – even amid the park's tallest trees, one is still very much aware of the city. Once night falls this impression is even greater, as flowers and branches fade into shadow and the lights of New York City shine brightly in the evening sky.

It is thanks to the High Line's innovative lighting system that the evening cityscape is visible from the park. Designed by Hervé Descottes of L’Observatoire International, the energy-efficient LED lighting is installed no higher than waist-level so that pathways are illuminated without creating overhead glare.

L’Observatoire's International was recently named the jury winner of the Architizer A+ Award in the Architecture + Light category for its work on the High Line. In honor of this achievement, we're presenting a collection of images that capture the magic of this innovative design, and have asked Descottes to share his thoughts on them.

Author: 
Andi Pettis
Threadleaf bluestar (Amsonia hubrichtii) with American lady butterfly. Photo by Steven Severinghaus An American lady butterfly dines on Amsonia hubrichtii, the threadleaf bluestar, at West 18th Street. Photo by Steven Severinghaus
 

The High Line’s planting design is inspired by the self-seeded landscape that grew up between rail tracks after the trains stopped running in the 1980s. Today, the High Line includes more than 300 species of perennials, grasses, shrubs, and trees – each chosen for their hardiness, adaptability, diversity, and seasonal variation in color and texture. Some of the species that originally grew on the High Line’s rail bed are reflected in the park landscape today.

This week we share one of our gardeners’ current favorites with you.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
The Northern Spur Preserve from fall, winter, and early spring, to now. Photos by Steven Severinghaus

While winter was a little longer than most of us would have liked, watching the transition of seasons this spring has been a real pleasure.

We loved this series of photos of the Northern Spur Preserve, on the High Line at West 16th Street, that High Line Photographer Steven Severinghaus has captured over the seasons. This GIF shows the mesmerizing transformation that takes place from autumn to this moment (full-blown spring!). Watch the snow melt before your eyes, giving way to early spring bulbs and new green growth. If only this year's winter could have gone by as quickly!

Enjoy more lush spring photos in the High Line Flick Pool.

Author: 
Andi Pettis
Photo by Phil Vachon The captivating pheasant’s eye daffodil, Narcissus poeticus, is the flower that the Greeks saw fit to both honor beauty and condemn vanity. Photo by Phil Vachon

The High Line’s planting design is inspired by the self-seeded landscape that grew up between rail tracks after the trains stopped running in the 1980s. Today, the High Line includes more than 300 species of perennials, grasses, shrubs, and trees – each chosen for their hardiness, adaptability, diversity, and seasonal variation in color and texture. Some of the species that originally grew on the High Line’s rail bed are reflected in the park landscape today.

This week we share one of our gardeners’ current favorites with you.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
EnlargeThe Chelsea Thicket in bloom. Photo by Stacy Bass

What a difference a week makes!

Warmer temperatures coupled with ample rain have fueled an explosion of new growth and vibrant color this week. Every bud along tree branches has seemed to burst, and delicate new blooms have popped up along the planting beds.

In Stacy Bass's gorgeous shot, which exemplifies the spring season, you can get a glimpse of the variety of plants that are making their first show of the season. The pink blooms of the redbud trees, the soft bottle brush–like flowers of foamflower, and the green of sedges and trees make this stretch of the park one of the most magical. Just north of West 20th Street, the Chelsea Thicket is an area of transition from grasslands to forest. Here you’ll find a mixture of shrubs and trees, and delicate understory grasses and perennials.

Discover all the blooms May has to offer in our monthly bloom list.

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