Best Aesthetically Pleasing Landfill New York 2002 - SOCRATES SCULPTURE PARK
In 1986 a group of artists led by Mark di Suvero transformed an abandoned strip of land by the East River in Queens from an illegal dump site into the SOCRATES SCULPTURE PARK, an outdoor studio and exhibition space for large-scale works of art. The park's current pieces range from conceptual (a tombstone with accompanying chalk inviting visitors to scrawl epitaphs) to formal (a stone sculpture involving a system of mirrors that defies explanation). The East River provides a lovely backdrop for works such as a musical wind-chime device, as well as a summer film and music festival. Though the location still contains traces of the park's landfill past, Di Suvero's enormous cranes serve as reminders of its current occupants.