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Roberley Bell
Costa Lopez Taylor Park

Location: intersection of Lopez Avenue and Charles Street in East Cambridge

Artist Roberley Bell created a sculpture, consisting of an open trellis in the shape of two gourds with attached gates. This new artwork flourishes in the new Costa Lopez Taylor Park, located at the intersection of Lopez Avenue and Charles Street, which was constructed between July and October 2008.

Before there was artwork or even a park, this small space at Lopez Avenue and Charles Street, which was donated to the City by the Beal Company, was a parking lot. The Community Development Department worked with the neighborhood to design a new space that would include community gardens, park tables and benches, ornamental plantings and public art. The new space would be connected to the existing Costa Lopez Taylor Park by closing the end of Lopez Avenue and replacing the roadway with walkways and landscaping. In 2007, to preview the new park, neighborhood residents under the leadership of the East Cambridge Planning Team created a temporary “painted park,” planting their ideas in painted form on the surface of the lot. Out of the asphalt grew this new verdant park that will one day abound with the fruits and vegetables of community gardeners’ labors!

Bell worked closely with the Arts Council and Rob Steck, landscape architect in the Community Development Department, to design a gateway between the seating area and the community gardens located in Costa Lopez Taylor Park. She used steel rods to create an open trellis allowing flora to intertwine with the art and further connect the park with the artwork. Bell’s work, which consists of several site-specific works, plays on and with nature, highlighting the relationship between the man-made and the natural landscape.

Over the past decade, Roberly Bell has created site-specific landscape projects for Millennium Park, Chicago, the Evergreen House at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland; Wave Hill, Bronx, NY; DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park, Lincoln, MA; Point State Park, Pittsburgh PA, as part of the Three Rivers Arts Festival; and National Public Radio in Washington, DC, as part of the city-wide Portals exhibition. Her work has been included in museum and gallery exhibitions including the Virginia Museum of Fine Art, Hallwalls Contemporary Art Center, The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, Art Center South Florida, Black and White Gallery in Brooklyn, Dieu Donne Papermill, NY, NY, and Paul Petro Gallery, Toronto.

:: Download press photos of Costa Lopez Taylor Park.

For more information, visit the Community Development website.

© Cambridge Arts Council 2008