Most park benches barely command a glance, let alone offer meditations on their surroundings, but designer Kickie Chudikova decided to change that. His public sculpture, spiral of lifeoffers a sinuous contrast to its linear backdrop under the Brooklyn Bridge, and was unveiled before an intimate crowd on September 15 as the winner of NYCxDESIGN’s inaugural IMPACTxDESIGN competition.
As part of the IMPACTxDESIGN competition, designers were challenged to use Caesarstone material in new ways to foster public and community engagement—spiral of life does exactly that. Chudikova’s sculpture, which doubles as a conversation starter, appears to be always in motion given its undulating form made of waterjet-cut pieces from Caesarstone’s outdoor quartz collection.
“The idea was to give people a playground to sit down however they want,” Chudikova told Debbie Millman, host of The Mic podcast, during a panel discussion later that evening at the DUMBO office. of the BIG-Bjarke Ingels group. “It’s such a challenge to design something three-dimensional out of two-dimensional tiles.” She shared that a childhood toy of a dinosaur skeleton served as inspiration. Like the toy, his modular bench consists of bony pieces connected by a single metal structure.
The form of the installation also nods to the gentle waves of the Hudson River and the sculptures of Isamu Noguchi. This project, says Chudikova, offered “an opportunity to work with quartz in a new and exciting way without fear of fading and staining.” Chudikova’s reliance on the material is evident in her choice of colors – the bench is a shade of eggshell white.
NYCxDESIGN and Caesarstone brought the installation to life in collaboration with the New York Department of Transportation’s Art Program, Dumbo Improvement District, and Design Trust for Public Space.