Right after Hurricane Sandy last fall, I came across this series at the IFPDA Print Fair by Brooklyn-based artist Spencer Finch. Entitled The River that Flows Both Ways, Finch used a camera and color and light meters, to record the exact appearance of the Hudson River at five points during one day. The five pieces of pigmented paper capture the incredible color range of the river, while the folds and crinkles illustrate the precise ebb and flow of the water. These prints were inspired by Finch’s memorable 2009 installation at the Highline in New York City, by the same name. In that piece, he took an existing series of windows, totaling 700 individual panes of glass, and represented the Hudson River’s ebb and flow during a period of 700 minutes on one particular day.
There was something about Finch’s interpretation of the Hudson that really made an impact on me during that chaotic time in New York after the hurricane. Nature had turned our confident city completely upside down. The Hudson River had caused chaos in Chelsea, overflowing into too many homes, shops, and art galleries. The work is a reminder of the beauty, power, and unpredictability of nature. New art by Spencer Finch will be on display at the James Cohan Gallery in New York from May 2nd to June 15, 2013.