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Katharina Grosse spray paints Hurricane Sandy-ravaged army base in new installation

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Katharina Grosse: Rockaway! courtesy MoMA

German monumentalist painter Katharina Grosse has unveiled her latest work in Fort Tilden, a neon pink reclamation of an abandoned army base nestled away on the Rockaways peninsula of Long Island, New York.

Katharina has brought a new lease of life to an army aquatics facility, structurally gutted by Hurricane Sandy, using her signature acrylic spray painting style. Unbridled by the bounds of the architecture, the sweeping neon hues diffuse into the landscape – the grass, sand and paving stones – surrounding the structural husk, both inside and out.

MoMA Ps1 commissioned this installation as part of an ongoing initiative to revitalise the areas worst hit by the seismic Hurricane Sandy in 2012, says: “These sprawling and sculptural landscapes evoke the physicality of action painting and earthworks through their gestures and monumentality…and encapsulates the stark beauty of the natural and manmade structures in which this installation is contextualised.”

Previous contributions have included artworks from the likes of Patti Smith, Adrián Villar Rojas and Janet Cardiff. For Katharina this latest work follows in the footsteps of her contribution for New Orleans’ Project 1 initiative, in which she painted a wind-wrecked townhouse in the city’s worst hit Low Ninth Ward, when Hurricane Katrina razed much of the historic city in 2005.

Rockaway! is free to visit at Fort Tilden, New York from 3 July – 30 November.

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