BEDFORD-STUYVESANT — A new interactive sculpture with seating designed to encourage leisurely chit-chat is coming to Herbert von King Park this month, according to the Parks Department.
Musa Hixson, 43, a lifelong Brooklyn resident who works out of a studio in Clinton Hill, is set to unveil “The Conversation Sculpture,” a 10-foot-high blue installation resembling a blooming flower, on June 29 on the southern side of the park along Greene Avenue, Hixson said.
Hixson said he hopes for the sculpture to give parkgoers a place to sit for a chat with friends or in quiet contemplation, and designed the bright blue installation to pop out in contrast with the greenery surrounding it.
“I wanted the work to be of the space and not just in the space, so that it’s not just something in the way or the artist getting off on his own work,” he said. “I like doing work that you can see through, and even if it contrasts with the things around it that contrast highlights the space.”
The sculpture, which includes three seats facing each other, will remain in the park for at least a year, according to a Parks Department spokeswoman.
Hixson, who has lived in Clinton Hill and Bed-Stuy since he was 5 and went to graduate school for sculpture design at Pratt, said he’s gotten a good response from passersby during the installation of the sculpture, which is still awaiting some finishing touches ahead of its official unveiling.
“Pretty much everyone who walked by was interested and excited about it,” he said. “I like that about community art, when people can feel like they’re connected to the art or connected with why the art is there.”
The sculpture is part of a citywide initiative in partnership with Uniqlo to put art installations in parks, with $200,000 in grants from the retailer going to 10 artists this year and another 10 next year, according to a Parks spokeswoman. Hixson got about $10,000 for the project, as did nine other artists who set up sculptures in city parks, with each borough getting installations in two parks a piece.
The Parks Department did its first grand opening of the project Tuesday, celebrating the launch of the initiative with an unveiling of “Flying High for Equality,” a sculpture by Patricia Cazorla and Nancy Saleme in Joyce Kilmer Park in Concourse.
Unveiling of "The Conversation Sculpture," 6 p.m. on June 29, Herbert Von King Park, near the entrance at Greene and Marcy avenues.