Alan Sonfist’s Time Landscape: Reflection (1965-1978-Present)

This exhibition at the Paul Rodgers / 9W Gallery in New York continues until July 2, 2005. Alan Sonfist is one of the founders of the Earth/Land art movement of the 1960s. It was Alan who first introduced the concept of bringing nature back into the urban environment, thus opening the way for contemporary urban architectural landscape movements.

Alan proposed his Time Landscape to New York City in 1965. This landscape sculpture, found at the corner of Houston Street and LaGuardia Place in Greenwich Village, is a replanted, pre-colonial forest in the heart of the modern metropolis, and reveals the physical environment of Manhattan before the city was built. It was realized under Mayor Koch in 1978 and dedicated by Parks Commissioner Henry Stern under Mayor Giuliani in 1998. Valerie Smith, curator of the Queens Museum, states in the catalog interview with Alan for her current show “Down the Garden Path: The Artist’s Garden after Modernism” that the Time Landscape is the “earliest earthwork of its generation.” Our exhibition celebrates the 40th anniversary of this project.

The exhibition is divided into two sections. First, there is a group of historical works, including two panels of the 16-panel Solomon Brothers mural which depicts pre-colonial Manhattan. The second section presents a new series Time Landscape: Reflection 2005 which explores the artist’s vision of his forest through fantasy and childhood memory. Images of the works in the show can be found at, as well as samples of other new works and historical documentary photographs of the installation of Time Landscape.