SOUTHAMPTON ARTS CENTER TO UNVEIL
A NEW OUTDOOR SCULPTURE GARDEN: WHIMSY

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Larry Rivers’ Infamous Legs Return to Southampton, and More

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(Southampton, NY… May 2021) After completing various grounds improvements projects to enhance their three- acre property, Southampton Arts Center [SAC – southamptonartscenter.org] is undergoing further transformation with the installation of a new public art project. WHIMSY, an outdoor sculpture garden curated by Eric Fischl, is currently being installed on SAC’s grounds, and will open to the public Memorial Day weekend. Featuring works from artists including Alice Aycock, Louise Bourgeois, Hans van de Bovenkamp, Mel Kendrick, Larry Rivers, David Salle, Almond Zigmund, and more, this public art exhibition is free and will be open daily.

“A long-time friend and collaborator of Southampton Arts Center, Eric Fischl’s latest installation on our grounds continues to wow and inspire,” shares SAC executive director Tom Dunn. “These playful sculptures are bold, vibrant, energetic works that complement our recently improved grounds. WHIMSY is another great example of SAC’s commitment to our community, offering a safe, inclusive space for everyone to experience arts and culture.”

Among these dynamic works is Rivers’ infamous 16-foot-tall pop art sculpture, Legs, which has long attracted both admiration and controversy. Alice Aycock’s 10,000+ pound cyclone, Louise Bourgeois’ eyes, and David Salle’s Elko Park, which has not been seen in 30 years, will be on display.

“WHIMSY is a wonderful, spirited, and intelligent show,” Fischl explains. “These works hit the right tone for the moment. They are playful – full of life, delight, and irony. It will be a memorable, dynamic outdoor exhibition.”

Architect Siamak Samii, who also serves on SAC’s board of directors, is behind other major grounds improvements, including a new brick courtyard in SAC’s iconic Caesar Garden, the establishment of new perimeters around each statue to further conservation efforts, and expansion of the north-south walkway. Samii also helped remove invasive plant species on the west lawn, and replaced a dilapidated fence on the property line. SAC’s outdoor improvements have been made possible thanks to the generosity Anke Beck-Friedrich and Jürgen Friedrich.

With help from partners at Group for the East End, The Perfect Earth Project, Long Island Native Plant Initiative, and Shane Weeks from the Shinnecock Indian Nation, SAC also installed a native plant garden on the grounds. These efforts are a nod to the organization’s ongoing commitment to the environment as well as the community by offering a free public space for all to enjoy, any time.

In celebration of these recent improvements and the installation of WHIMSY, SAC is hosting their inaugural summer cocktail party, Whimsy in the Garden, on Friday, June 25 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. This fundraising event, sponsored by Graff and The Purist, will feature bites from Acquolina. Learn more at southamptonartscenter.org/cocktail-party.

Special thanks to WHIMSY presenting sponsor Hauser and Wirth. Additional support for WHIMSY is made possible by Marlborough Gallery.

On view now in the galleries, EARTH – Artists as Activists, is open Thursday through Sunday from 12 to 5 p.m. This exhibition is free, though suggested $5 donations are appreciated.

Select Southampton Arts Center programs are made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

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SOUTHAMPTON ARTS CENTER

Southampton Arts Center is committed to community building through the arts. We present and produce inspiring, inclusive, socially and regionally relevant programs across all disciplines – welcoming, connecting, and collaborating with the diverse members of New York’s East End community and beyond. SAC is a not for profit 501(c)(3) organization.

For more information about Southampton Arts Center, located at 25 Jobs Lane, Southampton, New York 11968, visit southamptonartscenter.org or call 631.283.0967. Follow SAC on Facebook and Instagram @southamptonartscenter. 

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AAQ / Resource: Southampton Inn

In the Heart of Historic Southampton Village 

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