Sunk Shore

Sunk Shore, created by Carolyn Hall and Clarinda Mac Low, is a speculative, experiential tour of our climate crisis future that takes place along specific shorelines. The tours time travel into an extrapolation based on a deep dive into climate change data. Sunk Shore creates an embodied experience of information, giving the facts weight and impact. The events of the tour are based on research about events expected to take place (and already happening), including rising sea levels, changing animal species, higher heat, ingenious solutions, possible social revolutions, and more, using a combination of props (or “experiential what-nots”), narrative, and participatory activities. Sunk Shore has also expanded into an educational template, leading workshops for college students, and lectures for a variety of organizations.

Next steps for Sunk Shore: Creating a tour in collaboration with residents along the Gowanus Canal. Check back here for details, and get in touch if you would like to participate

Sunk Shore 2021

As part of Tending the Edge (a continuation of Walking the Edge, see below), where artists from across the five boroughs, spent two months offering points of engagement and weaving relationships across New York City’s shoreline, through districts, wetlands, rivers, and boroughs, all the way to city hall, Sunk Shore visited Cody Ann Herrmann’s Brownfield Boating tours in Flushing Bay and Creek, and took visitors on a tour of the future of the two shores there.

Sunk Shore 2020

As part of Walking the Edge, a collaboration between arts organizations Works on Water and Culture Push, and the NYC Department of City Planning, Sunk Shore took over the Works on Water Instagram account, and delivered a report back from the future shorelines of the East River. The tour started in a very stormy 2092, and traveled backward in time to 2068, 2043, and 2020.

Walking the Edge

We also shared a workbook with visitors to Governors Island that led them on a self-guided tour of the past.

Sunk Shore 2019

Sept. 7-8 & Sept. 21, 2019

In 2019 Sunk Shore returned to Governors Island. Carolyn Hall and Clarinda Mac Low led participants along a route close to and on the north shore of Governors Island, .

The tour was approximately one hour and traveled approximately one mile, from Soisson’s Landing on the shore, passing through Liggett’s Terrace and ending at Fort Jay.

Sunk Shore 2018

As part of the Works on Water/Underwater New York Residency at the WoWHaus (House 5B on Nolan Park, Governors Island), Carolyn Hall and Clarinda Mac Low led a tour along a route close to and on the south shore of Governors Island, time traveling into a speculative fiction based on a deep dive into climate change data. Tours took place Sept. 8 & 23, 2018.

Sunk Shore is built as an embodied experience of information about the climate crisis. Data can seem very remote or abstract, so Sunk Shore aims to give the facts weight and impact.

Devised by Carolyn Hall and Clarinda Mac Low, with contributions from Paul Benney.

Link here for Credits and Research for Sunk Shore

Documentation of tour and research process

Documentation of an installation of ephemera, artifacts, and research at the WoWHaus on Governors Island.

Sunk Shore 2017

A time-lapse video of the shape of downtown Manhattan’s waterline, from 1609-2100. Images of the past by Eve Mosher, Images of the future (and editing) by Clarinda Mac Low.
Paul Benney using existing structures to create the picture of the future: In the 2050s “Water Sampling Stations” are everywhere, because the natural water filtration system in the Catskills (which supplies much of New York City’s water) has eroded because of a shift in tree life. In the 2080s, the Statue of Liberty has been put on a flotation device, so it won’t flood during storm surges.
Sunk Shore participants wearing the “perspecticles” (distributed by TRYST, and invented by artist Charles Goldman) that allow them to see the future.
Preparatory sensory dance, while participants are convening
Participants led into the past dip toes into the Hudson River (currently the West Side Highway), then go to the 2050s enter boats to traverse the “canals of Battery Park City” (an area entirely built on landfill and soil dug up from the original World Trade Center).

Devised by Paul Benney, Carolyn Hall, and Clarinda Mac Low as part of the Works on Water inaugural triennial of art that works in, with, or on the water, co-produced and presented by New Georges theater company and 3LD Art & Technology, and co-curated by 6 artist/curators, June 2017

Sunk Shore was a playful speculative tour of the future of lower Manhattan. TRYST led participants along a route close to and on the Hudson River, first into the past (to establish the terrain), then into an extrapolated future, using sensory exercises, the surrounding structures, and evocative props.

At the end of the tour, everybody was given a pamphlet that contained all the data used to create the tour.

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