Photos by Tod Seelie

Lost Islands of New York


When it rains human waste flows into the river. In the summer there are so many fish in Newtown Creek they spring from its surface. When you are on the river you are able to witness the systems that support the city firsthand. A tampon in the water immediately teaches the connection between toilet and river. 


We can talk about how humans are constantly affecting their environment and feel overwhelmed. Or we can push boundaries and venture to a place to learn why we should cherish it.


We started the Lost Island Concert Series to celebrate New York Harbor while also inviting people to consider our complicated relationship with water. 60 boats, 100 people, and a marching band on a tugboat boated to where Mussel Island once had been.

The Lost Island Concert Series is just one of the projects I make under Tideland Institute - the non-profit I co-founded to create culture on the water. Our stage for the day was the WWII era tugboat we are restoring to become a mobile expedition laboratory and HQ of creative residencies in New York Harbor. 


Collaboration with N.D. Austin 

Gothamist Article