The photo above was taken by my father at the Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City. Art pieces here rotate monthly, featuring new works and different artists for people to discover.
The sculpture I’m standing beneath is by Nari Ward. It features a large upside down heart, made up scraps of rusty copper, hanging from a tall, red metal frame. Inside this copper heart is a bell you can ring. The noise it produces is nothing short of something magical and fantasy-like, soft jingles echoing from the depths of the inside of the heart and flowing outside. Like a heartbeat. When I shook the bell, I didn’t grab on to the string and shake it. I didn’t wildly swing the thread upwards. I didn’t shove the bell harshly. Instead, I gave it a very gentle tap. But that small gesture caused ripples of sound, and it let me know that something was inside the heart. I think that the whole structure of this artwork is an accurate model of how all of our hearts function. Whether it be a small smile, a pat on the shoulder, or a gentle tap, you will never completely know what the effect of your action is until it happens. The most tiniest of gestures can cause an entire earthquake in us.