September 14, 2022: 7:27am – 8:06pm
12 hours, 39 minutes

Similar to the Aotearoa performance (eighth iteration, initially scheduled for March 2020), the New York performance was also delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Orginally scheduled for September 5, 2020, the performance occurred on September 14, 2022. These two years of extra time became critical, offering genuine space for a deepening and growing collaboration between Sunde, the local community in Astoria, and Indigenous communities native to Queens and Long Island.

September 5, 2020 became a pivotal moment for the project. As a first step in kicking off the process of building this ninth work in the series, Sunde presented a Virtual Event at the site in New York City (The Cove, in Astoria, Queens). She live-streamed directly from the location for 12 hours and 26 minutes (the duration of the tidal cycle), with collaborators from previous sites around the world tuning in throughout the day. View the schedule and write-up about this event here and watch a recording of the livestream here.

This hyper-local engagement grew into a long-term community-powered art collective committed to stewardship, called Kin to the Cove.

A site-specific, community-engaged process: Sunde and NYC collaborators gathered at the water’s edge every month from September 2020 until September 2022, to build Kin To The Cove, a site-specific community-powered environmental public art process that connects local residents to the Cove and Water that surrounds NYC. This process built a team of 36.5 participants while building relationships with the water, imagining a healthier future, and committing to future stewardship of the site. Engagement events were also held across NYC in the lead up to the live performance, as well as after. To view the list of events that took place across New York, click here.

The live performance took place in the Cove on Vernon Blvd at 31st Ave, where Astoria meets Long Island City. Sarah stood in the cove for one full tidal cycle, inviting the public to join her by standing in water and/or marking the passing of hours from shore as “the human clock.” Artist collaborators created interventions and installations to amplify the performance. Over 175 people joined Sarah in the water, over 1000 joined as witnesses from the shore at the Cove. Additional viewing stations were set up on the NYC Ferry, Roosevelt Island, and Upper East Side, Manhattan to allow live audiences to gather from various viewpoints.

Simultaneous international performances took place at previous 36.5 locations: the Netherlands, Bangladesh, Brazil, Kenya, Aotearoa-New Zealand, with core collaborators organizing relay performances and events at the sites where the project initially took place.

Livestream of the final performance was broadcast online, outdoors and into venues in and around all five boroughs of New York City, around the country, and the world. Footage from the global performances was be layered-into the live-stream feed.  Thousands of people tuned in.

The New York Estuary durational video artwork was created at the same time. Six cameras captured the entire performance in real-time. Within 10 days, the footage was edited into a durational video work (same length as the performance: 12 hours, 39 minutes). The durational video artwork premiered first to the collaborating community at the Cove on October 2, 2022. An excerpt of the durational video artwork (rendered as a split screen) can be viewed here.

36.5 / NEW YORK ESTUARY promo video:

36.5 / Process, New York City, USA
Saturday, September 5, 6:43 AM – 7:09 PM
with Socrates Sculpture Park,
Works on Water, LMCC and NYU

36.5 / New York Estuary

Queens, Sewanhacky, Turtle Island-USA
Ninth Work in Series
By Sarah Cameron Sunde
with Works on Water, The Climate Museum, Arts Brookfield, Theater Mitu, New York University / The Skirball Center, Socrates Sculpture Park

Primary Collaborators 

Co-curator, Works on Water: Emily Blumenfeld; Academic thought partner: Una Chaudhuri; Collaborating artist & cultural consultant: Tecumseh Ceaser, Matinecock Turkey Clan; Producing team: Karishma Bhagani, Amanda Nesci, Maggie Harris, James Manzi; Kin to the Cove / community mobilization team: Christopher Bisram, Isabella Gallo, Bruce “FUSE” McNeil, Beanca Christoper, Fernanda Omi Arias; Human Clock Interventions: Christopher Bisram, Chief Reggie Ceaser, Audrey Dimola, Nettie Norman, Amiria Puia-Taylor, Elizabeth Velasquez, Shane Weeks  Other critical artist collaborators in NYC: Pamella Allen, René Stewart-Pearce, moira williams, Alexandra Aron, Lauren Helpern, Dave Washer; Graphic design: Frank Bloem; Composer for the video artworks: Joshua Dumas; Livestream team: Denis Butkus and Attilio Rigotti for Theater Mitu; Film / documentation team: Gretchen Burger, Erick Stoll, Joe Bender, Todd Leatherman, Saifud Wadud Helal, Jonathan Harrington, Tray Tsui, Iari Varialle, Third Rail Productions; Photography: Manny Tejeda, Reiko Yanagi, Steven Speliotis, Jeremy Dennis. Social media: Anna Musselmann; Team sustenance: Lisseth Morin

Made Possible with Support From

John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, MAP Fund, New York State Council on the Arts, Invoking the Pause, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council / Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone, Café Royal Cultural Foundation, Netherland-America Foundation, Citizens NYC Neighborhood Grant, Queens Council on the Arts, NYC Ferry, Hunter Boots, 36.5 team, advisors, and individual contributors

International Performance Leads

Kenya performance leads: Kimingichi Wabende, Wakili Mwatondo, Jordan Muindi; Brazil performance leads: Clara Domingas, Vinicius de Jesus Sapucaia, PDR collectivo; Bangladesh performance leads: Nasir Ahammed, Sumana Aktar, Fahmida Sumi; Netherlands performance leads: Nils van Beek, Jonas de Witte; Aotearoa performance leads: Mairi Gunn, Kingi Peterson

Livestream Hosts

Manhattan: Arts Brookfield, Grey Art Gallery, New York University, Riverside Park Conservancy, Brooklyn: The Mercury Store, Bronx: Bronx River Art Center, Queens: RISE Rockaway, Staten Island: Newhouse Center of Contemporary Art at Snug Harbor Cultural Center, New Jersey: Resilience Adventures

Public Venues Beyond NYC

Arizona State University, Flux Projects, Haverford College, IDEO Headquarters, IE University Madrid, Spain, Northwest Film Forum, Northwestern Connecticut Community College, Penn State University, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, University of Pennsylvania

Other key collaborators include: Ma’s House, The Watermill Center, Remote Theater, Astoria Film Festival, Arbert Santana Ballroom Freedom School, Clean Energy Leadership Institute Project, Minor Miracles, iDig2learn, Penn State, NAP / New York Historical Society, Center for Earth Ethics, Visiting artists: Michael Roberson, Danielle Hopson Begun, Nora Almeida, sTo Len, Marie Lorenz, Carolyn Hall, Koyoltzintli; Production assistants: Hafsaatou Barry, Annie Zusin;  Lifeguard on duty: Eirik Viruet; Kin to the Cove / development support: Audrey Dimola, Christina Delfico, Garfield Miller, Basil Vasiliou; Production hub: Chateau le Woof; Key production support: Tara Grieco, Miranda Massie, Brett Wolfe, Maya Shah, John Del Gaudio, Tyler Rai, Maridee Slater, Karen Kitchen, Jay House, Dara & Bill Schreiber, Cati Kalinoski, with special thanks to Queens Borough President’s Office, Vishal Thukral, SpaceTime, and everyone who has stopped by and been in conversation with us along this journey.