The Meeting House


Title: The Meeting House, 2017 - The Rose Kennedy Greenway
Photo Credit: Mark Reigelman II
Lead Artist(s):

Drawing from two significant parts of New England history, Reigelman’s ‘The Meeting House’ invited visitors to investigate Boston’s architecture and unearth the downtown area’s unique past. Towering more than 14 feet in the air and semi-submerged into the lawn (tilted at a 20-degree angle), the dwelling seeks to remind viewers of the thousands of displaced residents and demolished homes sacrificed for the city’s elevated highway infrastructure project. Furthermore, the installation draws from the Pembroke Friends Meeting House — the oldest surviving Quaker meetinghouse in Massachusetts — known for its progressive ideas like slavery abolition, prison reform, social justice, and gender equality. Traditional meeting houses became the community centers and had the defining characteristics of simplicity, equality, peace, and togetherness. They were places where community members openly discussed local issues, conducted religious worship, and engaged in town business. The Meeting House intends to mimic these ideals, highlighting the potential for civic structures to act as gathering points where passersby can explore, question and interact, and acting as a reminder of the essentialness of social interaction and civic discourse. The Meeting House’ intends to symbolize the precarious and daunting state of American culture while simultaneously injecting a sense of hope and buoyancy into the community. ‘The Meeting House' part of the Greenway’s Playful Perspectives exhibition of large-scale, site-specific commissioned works by artists with rising careers whose works playfully and delightfully expose the vulnerability of one’s sense of perspective. These works manipulated visual perception through the use of scaled objects and optical illusions, blurring the boundaries between art and everyday life, and between expectation and reality.

Public Space
The temporary artwork was installed in what is called the Fort Point Channel Parks. Prior it being part of The Greenway re-design, this site was part of the The Central Artery/Tunnel Project (CA/T), known unofficially as the Big Dig, a mega-project in Boston that rerouted the Central Artery of Interstate 93, the chief highway through the heart of the city, into the 3.5-mile (5.6 km) Thomas P. O'Neill Jr. Tunnel. The Big Dig was the most expensive highway project in the United States. The Rose Kennedy Greenway, sits on land created from demolition of The Central Artery/Tunnel Project. Commuters and visitors to the city enjoy the changing seasonal landscape of this park. The verdant gardens and open spaces were originally designed by Halvorson Design Partnership for the Massachusetts Horticultural Society in 2008 and installed with help from many volunteers including the Massachusetts Master Gardener Association. The landscape has evolved with the stewardship of the Greenway Conservancy and has frequently hosted public art installations. Blooms heighten these parks in summer and enclose visitors as they relax on the lawn or pass through to escape the traffic outside. Taking a break from work in the new red lawn chairs or seeing the nearby sights, it’s a spot to enjoy both city life and relaxing green space. There are wide varieties of trees and flowers found in the Fort Point Channel Parks, so before your visit, check out the Horticulture Page which highlights some of the interesting plants scattered throughout the parks. The Fort Point Channel Parks are some of the most colorful and with something always in bloom, there is always something new to see on the Greenway. The Fort Point Channel Parks are easily accessible by Commuter Rail from South Station or Red Line subway from South Station.
The Rose Kennedy Greenway
510 Atlantic Ave
Boston , MA 02210
United States

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The Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy
The Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy

Sculpture, Site integrated architectural work, Site integrated landscape architectural work
Concrete/Masonry, Metal, Wood
Eastern white cedar, birch plywood, galvanized metal, acrylic resin liquid coating, UV resistant plexiglass acrylic, cast concrete, steel