RICHARD GALPIN - VIEWING STATION
THE HIGH LINE, NEW YORK
MAY 2010 - MAY 2011
Presented by Friends of the High Line and the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation
Between May 2010, and May 2011 'Viewing Station' - Richard Galpin's first public artwork was situated on the High Line, New York. The Highline is New York City’s new elevated park, built on a former freight rail trestle on Manhattan’s west side.
Using a specially designed and constructed viewing apparatus, this commissioned artwork offered park visitors an altered perspective of a particular view from the High Line.
Galpin is best known for creating altered photographs of cityscapes. His chosen method of manipulation is to cut and remove the top layer of the colored emulsion from his photographic prints, exposing the paper substrate. By eradicating part of the photograph, the imagery becomes greatly abstracted. Using clean lines and sharp angles, Galpin's technique produces works with an emphasis on geometric shapes, recalling early twentieth century movements such as Constructivism, Cubism, and Futurism.
Galpin's Viewing Station functioned in a manner similar to his cut photographs, but used the view from one point on the High Line as its raw material. Park visitors looked through a viewing apparatus, lined up with a metal screen from which geometric shapes had been cut. Precise alignment of these two devices with the buildings behind them transformed what was seen. By blocking some details of the nearby buildings and revealing others, the artwork made them appear as optically flattened elements in an abstract composition.
Viewing Station was located on the east side of the High Line, between W. 17th and 18th Streets.