Kolonihavehus is a Night-Light for a Giant’s Home


“Kolonihavehus” is a sculpture created by artist Tom Fruin.

Tom Fruin’s sculputre Kolonihavehus is a night-light for a giant’s home. Currently on show in the Brooklyn Bridge Park, the shed-sized steel and plexiglass house is a feast of color, glowing brilliantly at night from lights both inside and out, nearly as gorgeous in the day with sunlight radiating though its quilt-patch patterns. It has a little of the feel of a church to look at it, painting everything nearby it with colored light.

Fruin works in found materials. He scavenged the plexi for Kolonihavehus from shops all over Copenhagen, from dumpsters and basements and abandoned shops. Named for the little worker’s sheds common in Denmark’s allottment gardens, refuge from the cities’ crowds, it evokes peace.

Fruin works in Brooklyn, but this installation reached New York only last September, after touring half a dozen cities in Europe and Scandinavia since its completion in 2010. It is the first work in his Icon serious, which has won international recognition.

Kolonihavehus isn’t Fruin’s only stained-glass piece in New York City. Watertower, Watertower 2 and Watertower 3 all shine above the streets of the city, three similar cylinders of steel and tilted glass. They are part of the Icon series too, but Kolonihavehus is the one at street level, approachable, and human-scaled. Its door is always open. Panels can be swung open or shut. The work can be touched, changed, affected.

It was brought to New York as part of the DUMBO art project last autumn. It can be found between the Brooklyn Bridge and Jane’s Carousel, and its exhibition there currently has no end date. Pick a day to see it when the light will be bright and clear, and bring your camera.

Image: via Brooklyn Bridge Park.


About Alex Holt

I am a local artist from Brooklyn, NY. I love art, design, books, photography, gardening and blogging.
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