May 21st, 2015

French conceptual artist Pierre Huyghe frequently incorporates living things like plants and insects into his sculptures and installations. His latest work, an evocative site-specific piece recently unveiled on the rooftop of New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, on view through Nov. 1, recalls at once a natural history museum display, an archeological excavation and an Earth art installation.

For his untitled Roof Garden commission, Huyghe pried up a number of the rooftop terrace’s large rectangular paving stones, setting them neatly alongside the hollows formed. Presumably, guards will have to keep careful watch on visitors lest they stumble into one of these recesses, most of which are filled with water and resemble shallow tidal pools. Several expose a layer of earthen sediment recalling that of a marsh or a river bed. The source of the water appears to be a leak in a large aquarium situated at one end of the terrace. This extraordinary glass tank features a sandy mound at the bottom and a boulder made of buoyant, porous lava that floats near the surface…

Writes by Jamilee Lacy in Art In America

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