Being able to partake in Petra Valentova’s opening is deeply meaningful to me as I have followed her journey to realize the  duck since 2010 – when she submitted it as a proposal for my own project, A Lot, that integrates community gardens and contemporary artists.  Petra’s proposal was too ambitious for my budget, and she ended up creating a Disaster Cookbook and doing cooking performances in Manhattan Valley gardens that year.  Subsequently, she got a grant from Queens Council of the Arts and this, in combination with a recent Kickstarter campaign, resulted in the sculpture now being a prominent feature of the LIC Community Garden.  There’s a pop feel to the bright yellow LIC Duck that makes it “pop” within the organic setting, and Petra’s design makes it possible to be enjoyed visually as well as to be comfortably climbed by children.

The opening featured the potent mix of community gardeners and artists getting together, almost always resulting in the exchange of further ideas and plans – involving art, gardens and local impact on one’s city.  And  a special closing of a special opening came with the celebration of the one year birthday of Ravi, Petra’s youngest son.

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