Fascinations by the River is an environmentally friendly and biodegradable art installation by local artist Shannah Warwick, in collaboration with the Friends of the Chemung River Watershed, which debuted with a ribbon cutting on April 30, 2022.
Take a picture of any or all of the 10 exhibits placed around Chemung County and post your photos on social media using the hashtag #fascinationsbytheriver. We want to see what happens to this art as it is consumed by nature, as well as what the public thinks our project. This exhibit will function as an art, social, and environmental experiment.
This project is made possible with funds from the Statewide Community Regrant program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature and administered by The ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes.
Scavenger Hunt Time!
Now that the pieces for Fascinations by the River are installed at boat launches and riverside trails, we need YOU to go find them and take pictures that you share on social media using the hashtag: #fascinationsbytheriver. Find each piece (10 in total), and help us to capture how they change throughout the year with photographic evidence that you share on social media. This is an art exhibit, a social experiment, an environmental experiment, a scavenger hunt, and a fun reason to get outside and explore!
Now it wouldn't be very fun if we just gave you the GPS locations for each piece, so instead, read these clues to try and find them ALL.
- If you are starting at the beginning of the Chemung River in Chemung County (heading East), you will find the first piece at a boat launch named after a locally famous LANDING... (here is a hint, the boat launch is in Big Flats, and is the first boat launch in Big Flats if you are coming from Steuben County!).
- After finding the first piece, head to the next boat launch heading east that is named after a SENATOR... it's down a short trail to the river's edge that is at this boat launch (here is another hint, the boat launch is also in Big Flats and behind a soccer field!).
- Continue heading east towards Elmira, and go to Pirozzolo Park in the Town of Elmira. For this one, you will have to walk a bit. Park at Pirozzolo Park, and walk down the paved path to the river. Once you see the paved boat launch ramp at the river's edge, head west on the trails, and you should see the piece on the trail. (hint: If you see a sign that makes you think of MORNING… you have gone too far.)
- This next one is a bit of a walk as well. Turn around on the Town of Elmira riverside trails and head east, staying near the river. You will pass a lot of street signs that correspond to the streets that dead end at the river, originating on Water Street. Once you pass a sign that makes you think of the queen of WINSOR… you should see the piece. (hint: If you see a sign for DININNY, you have gone too far.) Walk back to your car at Pirozzolo, so you can drive to the next one.
- Head south down Clemens Center Parkway to Cedar Street in the Town of Southport, and take a left onto Cedar Street. Park at the Seeley Creek levee entrance across from Tom Holleran's Auto Sales. Walk up over the levee, and look for where Seeley creek splits heading upstream or west. You should see it in a gathering of trees down near the creek, to the west of the levee entrance road. (hint: It is literally in line with Tom Holleran's Auto Sales.)
- Next, drive to where the Old Pioneer plays baseball… and look in the tree near the parking lot entrance. This is also by a boat launch, named after the stadium. (hint: this is on the southside of the City of Elmira near a locally famous baseball field.)
- Drive to the entrance to the Lackawanna Trail, across from Kennedy Valve on Grove Street near the I-86 Highway entrance. Park and walk onto the Lackawanna Trail. Once on the trail, head east and go over the old railroad bridge. Keep walking, and you cannot miss it. (hint: it's on the Lackawanna Trail.)
- Keep walking on the Lackawanna Trail, and you cannot miss this one either. (hint: if you exit the trail at Lowman without finding it, you have gone too far.) Walk back to your car, so you can drive to the next one.
- Drive to the first Lowman Exit, and get off heading towards the Town of Ashland. There is a boat launch there named after something you pay to go over a bridge, and the bridge that is right there is under construction. Go to the boat launch in the park by the bridge that is under construction (hint: it's down by the river in this park.) Drive back to I-86, and head east to the last piece.
- Get off I-86 at the Wilawana Exit, and head north towards the Chemung River. Stop at the boat launch with orange roofing that is named after a local bridge. Walk down the trail at the launch site that hugs the river, and you should see the piece. (hint: this boat launch is named after a former bridge that was once in the area that had the word WHITE in its name.)
We hope you find them all, take a picture, and share on social media using the hashtag: #fascinationsbytheriver. Enjoy, and please remember not to litter to keep our Watershed sparkling!
About the Artist: Shannah Warwick
Shannah Warwick is a local artist and the designer of fashion line BlckBts (pronounced "black boots"). Using a creative array of artistic techniques including hand-felting and the use of natural dyes, she sculpts exceptional organic pieces for wearing and display. Her creations are one-of-a-kind, weaving nature and art into seamless beauty.
Regarding her process, Shannah writes, "I use nuno felting technique on the majority of my pieces. This is a way of combining Merino wool into silk chiffon or silk organza. Any silk that is not black or white has been hand dyed using either commercial or natural dyes. Nuno felting also allows me to "sculpt" the pieces rather then sew them. Please look through my Instagram and Facebook for videos showing the process. This also means that each piece is handcrafted entirely by me.
I use high quality Italian Merino wool from a dyeing house that only works with farms where animals are treated humanely. A small portion of the undyed wool that I use is from a local farm that practices ethical farming, and animals are also treated well."
About her fashion line, Shannah writes, "BlckBts is a clothing and ritual line designed and handcrafted by me. BlckBts is for people who walk on the witchier side of life, leave room for a bit of magic, and need pieces they can wear with their favorite black boots. I focus on flowing styles that flatter different body types and have original design elements. I know you don't want to see yourself coming and going, so pieces are limited edition and one of a kind. I also love designing clothing and accessories that can be worn multiple ways.
I work in the woods of Upstate New York dyeing my silk fabrics and creating cobweb-like textures with Merino wool. I use little to no sewing in my pieces as nuno felting allows me to "sculpt" rather then sew. My ritual pieces are intentionally created using the energetic properties of the phases of the moon, plant magic, and other astrological alignments.
I am constantly learning new dye and fabric manipulation techniques to apply and expand my line. I incorporate nuno felting and hand-dyed textiles resulting in one-of-a-kind or limited edition pieces. BlckBts has been featured in runway shows, galleries, and in select boutiques including Joan Shepp and Toile in Philadelphia. Keep an eye out for virtual and in-person markets in major cities by following BlckBts on social media."