Fish & Ships
Building 611 is a 215,000 square foot, two-story, metal paneled building constructed in 1942 as part of the naval base’s wartime expansion. For decades it served as a storehouse for the Naval Air Material Center when the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard was a going concern. The building may look abandoned these days but some sections on the ground floor are still used to warehouse materials, leaving the upper story free to house the Sea Monsters HERE installation.
So, Long Suckers
The old Navy Yard is in the midst of a long-term revitalization and redevelopment program. At present over 13,500 employees work at 150 companies in an ideal setting that boasts miles of urban riverfront access. The Navy Yard’s grand scale and wealth of urban open space was a perfect complement to artists Filthy Luker and Pedro Estrellas, renowned for the eye-catching scale and surreal nature of their previous projects. The result of this partnership was a sculpture comprising 20 inflatable, tri-colored, sucker-encrusted tentacles up to 40 feet long. We’re gonna need a bigger bowl of drawn butter.
Arms & the Men
While it may not be obvious, there’s a method to the artists’ “madness” and in this case, Luker and Estrellas aim to inspire onlookers to view familiar surroundings in a different light. Yep, we think they’ve met that goal. The artists are also seeking to add a little humor to our everyday, workaday lives. “We’re aiming to make artwork enjoyable for all,” according to Group X, the project’s organizers comprised of anonymous Philly-based artists. “We want to break through the proverbial, and in this case physical, walls that can too often keep people from feeling invited into the arts world… and with this installation, we’re just getting started.”