September 4, 2020

Studio Proba Paints Pop-Up Mural for MP Pool Party in Manhattan Park

Studio Proba utilized some 50 gallons of donated Sherwin­-Williams Company paint for its 8,000-square-foot deck mural at Roosevelt Island’s Manhattan Park Pool Club, an annual instal­lation curated by K&CO and Pliskin Architecture. Photography by Max Touhey.

What began as a branding refresh has morphed into a comprehensive overhaul—plus an annual art installation. It was 2014 when K&CO and Pliskin Architecture were hired to reposition Manhattan Park, a rental-apartment complex built 
on Roosevelt Island in 1989. Although their scope has grown to encompass major capital improvements, the budget was small initially. K&CO’s Krista Ninivaggi saw a “diamond in the rough”
in the site’s pool. She and Barak Pliskin donned their curator hats for what they call MP Pool Party, in which they commission a different artist to paint a pop-up deck mural each summer. First was Eric Rieger, aka HOTTEA. For its sixth year, the concrete canvas went to multidisciplinary designer of the moment Alex Proba, who’s collaborated on previous projects with Rockwell Group and Studio Collective. “It’s lighthearted and joyful,” she says of her buoyant “shape party” featuring her signature peach, rust, and lavender shades. They also appear in her new Little Proba wool-bamboo rugs, the proceeds—$2,000 so far—going to Save the Children and the Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights.

Alex Proba sketched by hand, then moved to Illustrator for the final design. Photography by Max Touhey.

Watch a video of the installation below:

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