Bagels have taken over my life; nine enormous, larger-than-life, bagels. So for those following along on Snapchat and Instagram, and for those with a general love for bagels and perhaps an appreciation for art, here’s the story:
It’s Friday night at 8:20PM and I’m sitting on my couch in a zombie-like state. I just got home from the office, which happens to double as a 40-tenant shopping destination unlike any other. I’m drinking tequila on the rocks, ’cause it’s been that kind of a week.
It’s a Thursday night in July. I’ve just finished packing up my weekender for another sweet escape to Eastham. I’m ready for bed and I’m scrolling Instagram, the 2015 equivalent to reading before bed. My feed is made up of the usual square framed snapshots; picture perfect beach-scapes, adorably embarrassing throwbacks, and summery scenes from the bar. I stop at a photo of 5 enormous bagels, stacked high into the New York City skyline. I screenshot the image immediately, even before reading the caption that accompanies it. I send a quick email, subject line: “Public Art Inspo”. I need these bagels. Boston needs these bagels. The Street needs these bagels.
A lot happens at ShopTheStreet between then and now. We discuss the possibility of giving this lovable public art installation a home in Boston at length, we dream up a crazy idea to create a space for temporarily housing local brands and businesses, we address a lot of roof leaks, pay a lot of electricity bills, host a few dozen events, prepare for the arrival of three new additions to our existing mix of retailers, attend a lot of meetings and eat A LOT of bagels.
Our pop-up project dream becomes a reality. It’s first occupant? A Boston-based, New-York-Style bagel shop. Soon after, our enormous public art dreams become a reality, as well.
Which brings us back to a Thursday in November, Bagel Day, and the nine enormous, larger-than-life bagels that have taken over my life.
Somewhere in NYC, five Brooklyn hipsters hit snooze on a 5AM alarm clock. Eventually they roll out of bed, loosely lace up their Chucks and shrug into their flannels. Nine enormous bagels wait in a moving truck, each one individually protected by blankets of bubble wrap and styrofoam padding. They’re on the road by 6AM, expected in Boston before noon.
Somewhere in Connecticut, the moving truck breaks down. Nine enormous, larger-than-life bagels wait to be transferred into a new truck and five Brooklyn hipsters give us an update we don’t want to believe is true.
Somewhere in Massachusetts, The Street Team less-than-patiently awaits the bagels arrival; something equivalent to the Pope’s visit to Philly (to be clear, that’s a highly exaggerated comparison, I know).
Four hours behind schedule, with a threat of rain in the very near future, the nine enormous bagels and their five Brooklyn hipster installers arrive at The Street unscathed.
The bagels are unloaded and unwrapped and it takes a great deal of self-restraint to stop myself from tearing through the bubble wrap like a kid on Christmas Day. Instead, I stand back and let the five Brooklyn hipsters do their thing, while I do mine:
Bagel by bagel, we watched this 15-foot sculpture come to life, eventually forming an unusual and artful vase for a single budding tulip, emerging from the bagels center.
The installation process was complex and beautiful, choreographed in a way that seemed effortless, an art form in and of itself. These five Brooklyn hipsters, the same crew responsible for fabricating the nine enormous bagels, were pros. Through rain showers and cold New England temps, they held smiles through the entire process; this tiny detail, perhaps my favorite part.
Click through the following images below and watch the first sculpture take shape:
Everything by Hanna Liden, is a public art installation that hit The Street on a Thursday in November. It made its first-ever debut along the Hudson River Parkway in July of 2015, amongst the hustle and bustle of a New York City summer. The three-part installation features two stacks of enormous, larger-than-life bagels and one single bagel that sits independently on its own. Why? Why not. Meant to represent the eternal cycle of city life, the bagel, an everyday object, is transformed by Hanna Liden into a thought-provoking, beautiful and one-a-kind art form, loved by all.
It’s been a long week. A big, long, exciting week. And so, here I am on a Friday night, in a zombie-like state, sipping tequila on the rocks, telling the story of nine enormous, larger-than-life bagels that made their way to Chestnut Hill and in doing so, simultaneously took over my life and brought me great joy.