I made this abstract video diary to preserve the moment I was experiencing while standing in the Hudson Yards Plaza during a worldwide pandemic. The Hudson Yards Plaza is the home to a structure called The Vessel. This is a spot in Manhattan that quickly became a high traffic area upon it's historic opening day. It also happens to be a place I spend a lot of time because it's in my neighborhood, about one walking block from where I live. After nearly a year of dodging tourists and fighting my way through crowds of people speaking in a myriad of languages, it was so devastatingly bizarre to stand in the middle of this plaza with no one else there. I would never be able to film a video like this on a normal day. It was peaceful and beautiful, but at the same time terrifying in terms of the meaning of coronavirus and the level of impact it was happening not just on New York City, but on the entire world.
Deep breaths...in and out. I know I may seem calm in the video, but only because I believe, for me, this was a deeply spiritual moment on top of the shocking realization that my life would now be so different. In many ways, I had no reaction because I was just observing and listening...and trying to figure it all out.
Thank you for watching my video diary. I'm curious to hear what you think. Please leave your comments below. Be kind...and please realize that we all experience sadness and mourning in different ways.
I'm also sharing photographs below that I've taken with The Vessel over the course of 2019 to 2020. You can see a difference in emotion, I think. But listen, things are looking up. My purpose here is just to document so that I can look back and remember what it was like.
Photo #1: One of the first days I laid eyes on the completed Vessel from The Shed, where you can see it in perfect view.
Photo #2: This was the 1st time I was inside and at the very top of The Vessel. That feeling of being so high up had me a little flustered.
Photo #3: My 2nd time visiting The Vessel. It's so bizarre now seeing people standing so close together but it's a really nice reminder of how things used to be.
Photo #4: This was a fun day! My Honduran cousin was in town and I got tickets for us. This was my 3rd time up in The Vessel.
Photo #5: This is the entrace I use for the Highline that takes you directly to The Vessel. I did a photoshoot on this day so I was all dolled up.
Photo #6: I captured this shot of my mom and sister on my 4th time visiting The Vessel with them.
Photo #7: I made my mom pose for this shot. I think it's pretty epic.
Photo #8: The official beginning of coronavirus and the 2020 pandemic. New York was a ghost town.
Photo #9: Here agan is the entrace I would use to get to The Vesel but unfortunately the Highline was locked for many months. I could still get to The Vessel but I couldn't take the popular scenic path because the city did not want an influx of people here.
Photo #10: This was when I knew life was gonna be a whole lot different. Note: This was in April and every day is getting better.
In case you're wondering, yes I do adore The Vessel! I guess that's just what happens when you watch something being built over the course of 2.5 years from the ground up. I saw it grow from just a bunch of metal to a beautiful landmark. I'm curious to hear if you've seen it in person yet. Let me know, and as always, thanks for bringing your eyes here.