Pier 57 in Manhattan was once a terminal where shipping containers were imported and exported, but in recent days, it has been inactive. In order to bring back the elements of commercial activity and the container structures, Young Woo & Associates (YWA) is reconstructing a wharf to create Marina @ Pier 57, a marketplace formed from repurposed shipping containers, including a rooftop public park and various retail and cultural spaces. While the project is scheduled to open in 2015, YWA has reached out to Spanish firm Churtichaga + Quadra-Salcedo to create an installation to revitalize the space in the meantime.
The “Magic Carpet” installation includes 36 shipping containers hanging 10 feet above the ground, and occupies the south end of Pier 57. For 18 months, until the Marina’s opening, it will float in suspension as it witnesses and participates in a variety of events and exhibitions. The containers can be adjusted accordingly, providing a flexible space for a range of activities. While people anticipate the completion of the marketplace, the installation reintroduces shipping containers to the area, and initiates the recovery of an abandoned space.
Head architect Jose Maria de Churtichaga describes the installation in a poem:
The magic carpet is a floating ceiling of desires,
a waiting answer to your questions,
a never ending scenes scenery,
a million stories container contained,
a gravity less exciting room,
a place and a frame,
a kind foreground,
a ceiling or a wall,
a corridor or a landscape,
a start or the end,
the magic carpet is always ready,
raw and kindly ready for you,
it needs you,
is waiting for you to activate the magic…the magic from you.
Josemaría de Churtichaga + Cayetana de la Quadra-Salcedo
Mauro Doncel, Natanael López
Josemaría de Churtichaga