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Tom Fruin From Sea to Shining Sea Seaport
Photograph: Mike Szpot

Gorgeous 'stained glass' sculptures have gone up at The Seaport

You can walk inside and around these right now!

Shaye Weaver
Written by
Shaye Weaver
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If you've been in Brooklyn, you've seen that iconic "stained glass" water tower next to the BQE and another inside Brooklyn Bridge Park—you can't miss them: the sculptures' vibrant panes both reflect and color the city around them, especially at night when they light from within.

Two more of these incredible pieces, which are by Brooklyn artist Tom Fruin, are now at the Seaport to honor the 10-year anniversary of the artist's famous Brooklyn landmark "Watertower" that is visible from Pier 17.

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The two sculptures are part of an exhibition that'll be on through September called "From Sea to Shining Sea." The first sculpture, "Kolonihavehus" is the original piece that kicked off Fruin's "Icon" series of large-scale plexiglass and steel sculptures. It was inspired by Copenhagen's "kolonihavehus," which is a modest garden shed that can be found around the city's urban gardens. It was made with reclaimed and discarded materials, particularly with 1,000 scraps of individually framed Plexiglas that Fruin hand-welded into a delicate steel quilt. It's traveled the world in exhibitions for about 12 years so it now has "a patina of world travel and harsh urban environments," The Seaport says.

The other piece "Hi 5 Taxi Cab" uses actual NYC signs, like an ad for an old Taxi Cab Depot and Repair Garage. It was inspired by The Statue of Liberty, who with her hand raised, looks like she might be hailing a New York City taxicab—"the ultimate modern symbol of freedom," the Seaport says.

Tom Fruin From Sea to Shining Sea Seaport
Photograph: Mike Szpot
Tom Fruin From Sea to Shining Sea Seaport
Photograph: Mike Szpot

According to Bklyner, Fruin’s kolonihavehus "Maxikiosco" was installed at the Empire Stores in DUMBO in 2019 to help introduce the newly launched Time Out New York Market and activate the adjacent courtyard. Fruin's "Billboards" is also on permanent display at The Jackson Hotel in Long Island City and "Sail" was installed at the Syosett MTA Station in Long Island in 2019. That same year, Fruin installed both a water tower and a kolonihavehus at Hudson Yards.

You can see the two sculptures at The Seaport through September.

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