Plans to install Noa Bornstein’s artwork, Peace Gorilla, in Newtown Barge Park have been in the works since earlier this spring, and now, she’s here! 

“Artist Noa Bornstein’s Peace Gorilla has found her way home to Greenpoint where she was created. As of August 15, the sculpture is greeting, welcoming touch, and high-fiving park goers along the esplanade of Newtown Barge Park — where the East River meets the Newtown Creek. The path from the entrance to the park on Commercial Street at West Street leads directly to her. Peace Gorilla will remain in the park August 2022 — August 2023. 

From a position behind the sculpture, you can see that Peace (her first name) extends her arm toward the United Nations building and to her friends at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, where she was installed from 2020-2021 under the auspices of NYC Parks Art in the Parks Program — and now also with the permission of North Brooklyn Parks, in Greenpoint.”

Noa Bornstein

As an intentionally interactive piece, parkgoers are welcomed to touch and high-five Peace Gorilla. When you visit, you’ll notice the base of the gorilla features the word ‘friend’ in 90 languages, intended to encourage harmony and community. The piece also features a tactile QR code that you can scan for an audio guide that features information about Peace Gorilla and a small plaque in Braille and English to accompany.

Photo courtesy of Noa Bornstein

“The 800-pound gorilla in the room (or park) may symbolize what we humans have yet to accomplish. Peace Gorilla continues to invite us to make friends and peace with each other, and with hers and other species. A Celebration of friendship and community with Peace Gorilla is planned for Spring 2023.” 

Noa Bornstein

Originally created in 2010, Peace Gorilla has found herself in many NYC neighborhoods, but returning home to Greenpoint makes this particular installation very special, though it would not be possible without the team of artists, craftsmen, and community leaders who helped bring Bornstein’s vision to life. This list includes (but is not limited to) the folks at the Bedi-Makky Art Foundry, Oso Industries, Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center, Lisa Yokana and her students at Scarsdale School, Joy Bieder, Tommy Kharieh, Mcneal Stephen, Guillermo Moran, Wilson Chimbo, and Bornstein’s husband, Eric Batchelor.

Instagram: @noabornstein

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