Please join us for the Opening Celebration of The Need You Know It Is A Letting Light, Sarah E. Brook’s monumental multimedia installation at the Lena Horne Bandshell in Prospect Park. Refreshments will be served.
The Need You Know It Is A Letting Light is a set of three abstract wooden sculptures and an accompanying mural that together expand the artist’s exploration of communication between external and internal psychic space. The mural’s colors of red, yellow, and green are sourced from the natural beauty of Prospect Park, and both draw viewers in from the park and radiate out from the Bandshell and stage into the park, reflecting the function of a bandshell to expand voices. The repurposed wood sculptures respond to the colors of the mural, expressing warm-hued shadows that appear to be held within. The sculptures’ material communicate their singularity through wear – a crooked nail, an empty hole, a worn edge – and in its gentle leaning formation, allows for the sculptures to be read as bodies supporting one another.
Sculptural abstraction, for Brook, is based on a commitment to create spaces for queer, gender non-conforming, and trans folks to experiment with embodied perception, encouraging and affirming a multisensory experience of being whole in the world. Their geometric sculptural forms utilize salvaged wood that both contains the history and identity of each particular piece and expands that singularity outward through painted gradients. They communicate the possibility of a selfhood that can be known and shared, and is, in fact, capable of moving beyond the confines of a body and environment.
Specificity for Brook is key to the possibility of vastness – it is not by leaving the particular self behind, but by moving deeply into the exact needs, desires, and knowings of that self that creates a path toward perceiving a wider world of creatively expanded possibilities. The specific and the infinite are intimately entwined. Brook’s relationship to expanding space is both personal as well as contextual, formed by the world around us. Nature, for Brook, is often a muse for testing out these possibilities, and the New York City park system has become a site for many of their interventions in space. Their understanding of expansiveness is influenced by their childhood in the Nevada desert as well as pioneering land and light artists of the Western United States Nancy Holt, Larry Bell, and Agnes Martin.
Brook has had solo exhibitions at Open Source Gallery, Sweet Lorraine Gallery, Gowanus Loft, and Greenpoint Gallery, all Brooklyn, NY; and Turley Gallery, Hudson, NY. They have also exhibited in group shows at BRIC, Nha Minh, A.I.R. Gallery, Carrie Able Gallery, Ground Floor Gallery, and Williamsburg Art and Historical Center, all Brooklyn, NY; Lazy Susan Gallery, The Artist Gardener, Lithuanian Alliance, Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art, SculptureCenter, Maison10, Castle Fitzjohns Gallery, Lesley Heller Workspace, Field Projects, Front Art Space, Hot Wood Arts, David & Schweitzer Contemporary, all NY; Turley Gallery, Hudson, NY; Glass House Project, New Paltz, NY; and Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art, Staten Island, NY. They participated in the BRIClab Video Art Fellowship. Brook holds a BA from the University of Notre Dame and an MSW from Arizona State University.
The Need You Know It Is A Letting Light is presented by BRIC and Prospect Park Alliance, in partnership with NYC Parks.
BRIC is a leading arts and media institution whose work spans contemporary visual and performing arts, media, and civic action. Since 1979, we have presented the world-renowned BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival at the Prospect Park Bandshell. As a creative catalyst for our community, we centralize diverse voices that take risks and drive culture forward. BRIC is building Brooklyn’s creative future. Learn more at BRICartsmedia.org.
Prospect Park Alliance is the non-profit organization that sustains, restores and advances Prospect Park, “Brooklyn’s Backyard,” in partnership with the City. The Alliance was founded in 1987 to help restore the park after a long period of deterioration and decline. Today, the Alliance provides critical staff and resources that keep the Park green and vibrant for the diverse communities that call Brooklyn home. The Alliance cares for the woodlands and natural areas, restores buildings and landscapes, creates innovative new destinations, and provides volunteer, education and recreation programs. Learn more at prospectpark.org.
For over 50 years, NYC Parks’ Art in the Parks program has brought contemporary public artworks to the city’s parks, making New York City one of the world’s largest open-air galleries. The agency has consistently fostered the creation and installation of temporary public art in parks throughout the five boroughs. Since 1967, NYC Parks has collaborated with arts organizations and artists to produce over 2,000 public artworks by 1,300 notable and emerging artists in over 200 parks. For more information about the program visit nyc.gov/parks/art.