A dedication for the new Water’s Soul statue was hosted on Oct. 21, with officials and others gathering at Newport Pier Park near the Hudson River.
The statue was created by Jaume Plesna, a Barcelona-based artist, and commissioned by LeFrak and Simon, two prominent real estate developers. Standing at 80 feet tall, it will be a permanent installation at the pier.
“It’s quite thought provocative, because everybody looks at it and has a different interpretation of it,” said Richard LeFrak, the chairman and CEO of LeFrak. “But I think it’s a beautiful thing, and hopefully it’ll be a landmark on the Hudson River and maybe an icon.
The statue was created by Plesna in Barcelona, and is a combination of about 110 pieces with a steel frame. The process on the project took four years from start to finish, and six months to put it together in Jersey City.
“This is going to transform the skyline here and make it a visible part of the skyline that’s distinct from just buildings,” said Mayor Steve Fulop. “On the side of the river, you see the Statue of Liberty and the Colgate Clock. You see this, it really creates more character for the city and New Jersey skyline.”
Plesna spoke at the dedication and explained the meaning behind the statue. “I would like to say that our bodies are sixty percent of water, and seventy percent of the air surface is covered by water,” he said.
But as he said that water is asking for a bit of silence, the whirring of helicopters flying over the Hudson River interrupted him, much to the laughter of the crowd.
He later spoke saying that the water is asking for silence “to get back to having the possibility to listen to the profound sound of the voice of the world.”
“Water in my opinion, is the great public space, a space that does not belong to no one, but at the same time it belongs to all of us,” said Plesna. “Water’s Soul is Newport’s figurehead, moving through the water into the future. That’s my dream.”