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Union Square's Sukkah City Gets a Gowanus Preview Party

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Neither sleet nor wind nor possible tornado could keep aficionados of Judaic ritual huts from gathering in Gowanus for a sneak peek of the 12 finalists in the Sukkah City competition. The winning dozen, winnowed down from over 600 entries, will be erected in Union Square Park starting late Saturday night, and then on view there through Monday evening. (A "People's Choice" winner?vote here!? will stay up through Oct. 2.) Consider the above photo gallery a big spoiler alert, sukkah!

Last night the open expanse of the Gowanus Studio Space was stuffed with sukkahs, and curious folks wound their way between the reeds and poles, climbing inside to get the interior view. The creations were in various states of construction, ranging from the neat and nearly complete "Sukkah of the Signs" by Ronald Rael and Virginia San Fratello out of Oakland, California, to the more conceptual P.YGROS.C (“Passive Hygroscopic Curls”) from Brooklyn's own THEVERYMANY.

SO-IL's netted "In Tension" holds a green garden overhead. Henry Grosman and Babak Bryan's "Fractured Bubble," a plywood orb embroidered with 8,000 yards of twine and crowned with spikey marsh grass, offers a peek-a-boo sanctuary. The team of tinder, tinker out of Idaho found a way to create walls, floors, tables and more out of humble little pieces of wood to create "Shim Sukkah," overlapping the thin slats and building surfaces that both conceal and reveal. And "Blo Puff," a bubbly shell by Brooklyn's Bittertang, filled the entire Gowanus space with the pungent aroma of eucalyptus. After getting a glimpse at the works-in-progress, we're sure of one thing: These ain't your zeyde's harvest huts!
· NYC 2010 [Sukkah City]
· Union Square Park Sukkah Contest Finalists Revealed [Curbed]

Union Square Park

W 14th Street, New York, NY 10003