Governors Island opens FIGMENT Interactive Sculpture Park & Mini Golf

Kids playing on Governors Island's vast Parade Ground.

As far as we're concerned, you don't really need an extra-added-bonus reason to visit Governors Island this summer, beyond the usual appeal of leisurely bike rides (bring your own or rent at Bike and Roll "on-island"), and lovely views, and pleasant picnics. Of course, there are plenty of special events to tempt the non-converted to make the crossing… such as THIS WEEKEND, June 16 and 17, the annual, full-costume Jazz Age Lawn Party, which is always a good time. And there's lots of great art on Governors Island, if that's your thing (it's definitely ours), including Mark di Suvero's spectacular sculptures, back for another year; the LMCC's Art Center in Building 110, with its open studios and exhibitions; and, new this summer, and the best show the Cooper Hewitt's put on in years, Graphic Design: Now In Production in the (by the way air-conditioned) Building 101.  

Kids playing at the playground at Governors Island's FIGMENT's Interactive Sculpture Garden.

And in addition to all of the above, last weekend marked the Governors Island unveiling of FIGMENT's Interactive Sculpture Garden and Minigolf Course for 2012 and, we must say, it is fantastic. Because of renovations going on around FIGMENT's usual location on the lawn behind Colonel's Row, this summer the Sculpture Garden and Minigolf Course can be found at the southern end of Governors Island's vast Parade Ground. Not as cozy, perhaps, but that view of the rolling field up to the old Fort Jay (not to mention the very new World Trade Center in distant Manhattan) is pretty amazing. Plus, the tree on the Parade Ground used for Benjamin Jones's elaborate, colorful, musical TreeHouse (with slide!) is particularly beautiful.  

Children playing on Zaq Landsberg's climbable Face of Liberty on Governors Island, NYC.

Taking a photo by the giant empty TV by Asha Ganpa on NYC's Governors Island.

Figment NYC's Interactive Sculpture Garden Governors Island New York is Also a Minigolf Course

And the FIGMENT Interactive Sculpture Garden has several more awesome pieces as well, including Zaq Landsberg's climbable Face of Liberty, a life-size replica of the famous lady's face in the harbor, that will provoke no small amount of jokey Planet of the Apes references in the coming months; the extremely photo-op-able giant empty TV by Asha Ganpat, called Live!, which will provoke no small amount of jokey Charlie and the Chocolate Factory references in the coming months; and Romy Schreroder's tangle of half-submerged bright-red chairs, No Place to Sit. 

Playing FIGMENT Minigolf at Mario's Princess' Castle at Governors Island in New York City.

Fly Swatter FIGMENT Minigolf players at NYC's Governors Island.

And for all of you duffers from age, oh, 18 months to 180 years, there's FIGMENT Minigolf, nine new holes, each designed by a different artist (or, more often, a team of artists, including a couple of school-age teams), each playing of the theme of the old-school arcade. These all looked like fun (we deferred to the younger set on this day), but especially cool were Princess' Castle, the pixelated homage to the legendary Mario; the crazy-elaborate Rules of the Game (with help from City and Country School students); and the Asteroids-ish Fly Swatter. FIGMENT Minigolf, by the way, is totally free. Just pick up your putters and balls at the booth and play away. 

Little kid playing minigolf, Rules of the Game by City and Country School students.

FIGMENT Interactive Sculpture Park and Minigolf Course on Governors Island details

Governors Island is a quick, free ferry ride away from Manhattan (at the Battery Maritime Building in the Financial District) and Brooklyn (from Pier 6 in Cobble Hill/Brooklyn Heights), and is open every Saturday and Sunday (and Labor Day Monday) from now through September 30, from 10:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. Everything you need to know about  Governors Island, including the complete Governors Island free ferry schedule, can be found here. For more information about FIGMENT , the Interactive Sculpture Park, and the free Minigolf Course, check out the FIGMENT website, here

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