Manhattan Park’s annual Pop-Up Pool Party gets new art that imagines a bright and sustainable future

June 30, 2023

Photo credit: Michael Alley with Allyson Lubow Photography

Roosevelt Island luxury rental community Manhattan Park has unveiled its ninth annual outdoor pool art transformation. Colorful, transformative art has graced the community’s Pop-Up Pool Party each summer, beginning on Memorial Day. This year’s artist, James Gortner, was selected for his artistic and colorful vision; Gortner’s themes for this year’s art are the joy of existence and sustainability.

The New York City-based Gortner integrates sustainability into his work using reclaimed paint harvested from various sources, both to raise awareness and to reduce waste and demand for new paint production. This year’s pool deck design uses intuitive bursts of color determined by whichever paint caught the artist’s eye, connected in passages using a variety of techniques such as rolling, spraying, throwing, mixing, scraping, sanding, brushing–and the occasional Nike AF1 footprint. It took Gortner five days and 60 gallons of paint to complete the project.

“When I make a painting, one key point of inspiration besides sustainability is to make the painting as much a mosaic of ideas and forces as New York City itself is. It’s awesome to me that the viewer could experience this work at the pool while seeing a panoramic view of this city,” Gortner remarked in a statement. “Look at the changing nature of the sky and the river, look at the painting as a whole, and also zoom in on small marks and passages to find glimpses of past layers of transmuted mural paint inside the work. I hope people contemplate that beautiful, new things can be made greener.”

The 60-foot pool at the 8.5-acre residential complex on the Roosevelt Island waterfront features a sun deck with iconic New York City views and a park-like vibe. The pool is available for Roosevelt Island residents as well as non-residents to join on a seasonal, monthly, or daily time-slot basis.

Manhattan Park has championed local artists throughout the project’s nine-year run, while providing a vibrant frame for the pool deck. More information on pool memberships and the community itself can be found here.


Photo credit: Michael Alley with Allyson Lubow Photography

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