A little more about Albany's floating, burning tulip. Because we just had to know.

WaterFire Providence

A scene from WaterFire Providence in 2006

Like Nicki, we too were intrigued by the thought of a floating, burning tulip. It turns out that floating, burning art is sort of a thing right now.

As far as we can tell, the trend began in 1994, with environmental artist Barnaby Evans. Evans installed a floating, burning art exhibit in Providence, Rhode Island.
Apparently it was such a hit that Kansas City, Missouri and Columbus, Ohio commissioned Evans to create some floating, burning art for them too. The exhibits run for months and are accompanied by classical music. Kind of like Yanni with a lighter.

According to the Times Union, Albany officials approached Barnaby Evans about creating some floating burning art for our fair city, but the price tag was too high. So they're going a more economical $100,000 version. Don't think of it as cut rate floating, burning art think of it as floating burning art for a good value.

photo: Flickr user hlkljgk used under a Creative Commons Attribution / Share Alike license


WaterFire, in Providence, doesn't float. And it's also one of the coolest, most innovative things an American city has done to draw people back to the urban core in a long time....

Innovative would be the operative word here - I think that's Albany's problem. Several cities have already jumped on the band wagon, and to add a touch of irony - rather than commissioning the artwork for several weeks or months, we took the two-hour-light-it-on-fire special. Trust me, I appreciate the cool effects this surely promises - color, fire, water, heat - it's truly tantilizing. The question is, what will it do for Albany specifically? You need a safari-worthy Range Rover just to navigate the pot holes down Western Avenue, and we're spending $100,000 on a burning tulip.

Regardless, the much anticipated day has finally arrived.

Despite my sarcasm and skepticism, I will be at Washington Park promptly at 8:00 p.m. tonight to watch the tulip go up in flames. On second thought, maybe I'll be across the street on Madison Ave. After reading the description of how this is all going to go down, I think maybe standing back is a good idea. Perhaps I'll rub some of Dr. Z's Zel Gel all over myself too. Safety first.

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

What's All Over Albany?

All Over Albany is for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. In other words, it's for you. It's kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who can help you find out what's up. Oh, and our friends call us AOA.


Recently on All Over Albany

Photos from the 2018 Women's March in Albany

Thousands of people gathered in West Capitol Park in Albany Saturday afternoon for a second Women's March, a follow-up to a similar event a year... (more)

A big step forward for the Quackenbush Center mixed-use project, and other exciting tales of the Albany Planning Board

That big mixed-use project proposed for just north of Quackenbush Square in downtown Albany took an important step forward this week when the city planning... (more)

Belt Line 3

The owners of Roux in Slingerlands are planning to open a new restaurant in a space on Hamilton Street in Albany, just up from the... (more)

Stuff to do this weekend

We're in that January lull in the Capital Region -- those couple of weeks after the holidays when things slow down just a touch. But... (more)

Morning Blend

Call for Troy police reform + Prompted by the recent state Attorney General's office report about the fatal police shooting of Edson Thevenin, activists gathered... (more)

Recent Comments

When I think of spring, I think about riding my bike along the Mohawk. The spring breeze flows over me and I'm free.

A good rehearsal dinner spot in Saratoga?

...has 6 comments, most recently from AddiesDad

Capital Region ice skating spots

...has 1 comment, most recently from Nancy

Belt Line 3

...has 10 comments, most recently from BS

A big step forward for the Quackenbush Center mixed-use project, and other exciting tales of the Albany Planning Board

...has 2 comments, most recently from Greg

The week ahead

...has 1 comment, most recently from Dave