Sections

‘Well’ wisher! DUMBO artist tends to giant spring in Cadman Park

Brooklyn Daily
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Don’t miss our updates:

Leonard Ursachi is the first to admit that he’s obsessed with water wells.

Last month, the Romanian-born artist created one made of recycled bottles and a giant wooden lever in Cadman Plaza Park for an installation he calls “Well.” And he’s been tending to it ever since, cleaning up after kids, dogs and even Occupy Wall Street stragglers.

It may not provide water, but the well draws many curious amblers — and that’s just what he wants.

“This has been a subject that’s been tormenting my mind for a long time,” said Ursachi, who has a studio in DUMBO. “People connect with the idea of water as a gathering place.”

Ursachi has been emulating the boreholes of his homeland since they began rapidly disappearing 15 years ago. His first exhibition in Romania was an homage of earth and straw bricks.

In 1998, he forged one in DUMBO using wood and Astroturf.

Today’s rendition near Red Cross Place includes a shimmering wellhead made of acrylic bricks. He modeled them after discarded Belgian blocks from the streets of DUMBO and filled them with recycled plastic bottles.

Nearby is the 24-foot-tall lever made of what he calls “driftwood from the beautiful shores of DUMBO beach,” and a bucket of metal and concrete.

And like his other wells, there’s a mirror at the bottom so you can gaze at your own reflection.

Every day he happily walks by the plot and wipes off any grime.

“I saw people testing it, spitting on it,” Ursachi said. “That’s OK, it’s fine. Maybe the well will make them think twice and help them understand that this is a lost source.”

Many of the wells from back home, for instance, are now covered in concrete or turned into Coca Cola kiosks or “quarter-store bodegas.”

He mounted the entire project himself and wouldn’t allow anyone to help him, even after he was hit by a car in March and had to take a few months off.

“The well is a ritual, it has its own story,” Ursachi said. “It’s a community gathering point and I want people to remember that.”

“Well” at Cadman Plaza Park [Cadman Plaza East between Red Cross Place and Prospect Street in Downtown, (212) 360-8163], through April 30, 2012. For info, visit www.ursachi.com.

Reach Kate Briquelet at kbriquelet@cnglocal.com or by calling her at (718) 260-2511.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Don’t miss our updates:


Reasonable discourse

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: