EAF16 Artist Profile: Liene Bosquê
For her 2016 Emerging Artist Fellow Project, Liene Bosquê created Terracotta Impressions composed of a brick sculpture (4 x 6 x 16 feet) and socially engaged walks that reflect the complex relationship between the Long Island City and Astoria’s architectural history, urban landscape and its citizens.
During performance walks in June and July 2016, Bosquê invited the public to collect clay impressions of architectural elements of Socrates Sculpture Park while gathering narratives of the communal landscape. “We don’t usually catch nuances around us in our routines, when moving in a slow and group walk, there comes this heightened attention to the details around us” Bosquê mentions. The artist believes the walks to be a shared experience and a space where we can transform the mundane into memorial.
“My process is very tactile, and intentionally so, considering how often we experience the city through camera lens.” To collect impressions, individuals on the walks have to use their hands and often heft the weight of their bodies to make the impression, “there is something about physically exerting force to get the impression that makes the experience memorable, and it is in the labor of the moment.” The impressions of drains, grooves in stones, the ridges of bolts on beams, and much more have been collected.
The impressions are made on terracotta clay tiles and have been fired and incorporated them into the exhibition structure, as an interior relief panel. The piece resonates the footprint of historic and now shuttered New York Architectural Terracotta Works building on Vernon Boulevard, (one of the few landmarks on the neighborhood) to Socrates. When looking at the quickening development of Queens and the rest of New York City, Bosquê centers her work “about the importance of history, what is left and what will come in the future.” Referencing the gentrification in Long Island City, the artist hopes park goers will interact directly with the project. “I want people to know they are free to congregate within the sculpture, to sit within it and continue the communal narrative developed around its circumstance.”