Five Elements


Artist - Xin Song

In the Summer of 2013, five framed art fixtures were installed along the Garment District Plazas featuring paper-cutting art by artist Xin Song.  

On one side, the images will be cut from current, site-specific photographs of the neighborhood using a variety of traditional Chinese papercut techniques and laminated onto tempered glass. The other side of the images will be cut from solid black paper, creating a silhouette reminiscent of the wrought iron filigree elements found in historic New York City architecture

The individual pieces of the Five Elements installation are inspired by the theoretical Water, Fire, Wood, Metal, and Earth elements, used in a variety of fields from medicine to feng shui. Together, the work is an exploration of environmental and personal transformations in our shared City surroundings. Each of the five intricately-patterned paper cuts reflect the color and  symbolism of an element. The fixtures were enhanced by corresponding elemental imagery painted in circular patterns on the plaza pavement.

Born and educated in China, Xin Song now lives in Brooklyn and creates her work from her studio at the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, located in the Garment District. Among her recent works, Song created a large-scale work in 2012 for the Bay Parkway Landmark Station in Brooklyn as part of the MTA Permanent Arts for Transit program, which was highlighted on the PBS program, Treasures of New York.