Roaming around Peekskill's Riverfront Green Park, now draped in snow, thanks to a storm that hit just as my Metro North train departed NYC's Grand Central Terminal, I understood how, over the centuries, artists have taken their inspiration from the Hudson Valley. Many infuse their landscapes with a sense of the romantic
Basha Ruth Nelson's oeuvre, a 10-foot-high steel ring, is a simple, graceful form that allows the viewer to interact with it, viewing the park and the Hudson as if through a window. "The Golden Mean," sculpted by Carol A. Feuerman, is a buff, 16-foot-high bronze diver that's so infused with energy, it looks as though he will fly into the river. Nearby, Serge Onnen's Planetariummonetarium is a steel sphere resembling a space object. Farther along the shoreline is a small hut constructed of weathered steel and set atop a steel bar. This work by Daan Padmos,"Time Sharing," is inherently unstable, looking like it was just washed ashore.
In the town itself, art work appears just about everywhere you look, whether in a vacant lot, across from parking spaces, snuggled between buildings, coating an expansive facade, even set atop concrete benches.
With all the focus on these large works and with the snow draping every outdoor surface, it's easy to miss the series of colorful tile-covered concrete benches that lead visitors all the way to the HVCCA. The tilework, created by some two thousand school kids, provides visual representations of the history of the Hudson River and Peekskill, including English explorer Henry Hudson himself.