Marie Lorenz

“For a project called the Tide and Current Taxi, I ferry people through New York City in boats that I design and build. I study tidal charts of the harbor and use tidal current to propel the boat. The act of floating impacts our observation; we balance our own body and absorb details in the environment. This kind of looking creates something new out of something familiar, an attempt to ‘un-know’ the city. Using the tide to navigate has unlocked a secret geography for me. We see the river as the very first inhabitants of New York must have seen it, a shifting network of passages and barriers.

I publish a web-log about each trip, drawing a parallel between these ancient networks and new digital pathways. I also capture video footage and collect objects that I find washed up around the harbor, using them to make sculptures, and multichannel video installations. The harbor is like a giant centrifuge, reorganizing things that we value alongside things we throw away. I want to bring the experience of navigating through these liminal spaces into actual physical space.” - Marie Lorenz

On the occasion of Commuter Biennial, Marie Lorenz activated her Tide and Current Taxi in several of the waterways cutting through Miami-Dade County. Here in Miami, Lorenz toured audiences through the Little River Canal, Tamiami Canal, Biscayne Bay, and the Gables Waterway. In doing so, Lorenz explored Miami from a unique perspective to the dozens of homes and industries along the county’s waterways.

Tide and Current Taxi , 2018

Tide and Current Taxi, 2018

Tide and Current Taxi , 2019

Tide and Current Taxi, 2019

Marie Lorenz (b. 1973, lives and works in New York, NY) roots her work in exploration and narrative. Since 2002, Lorenz has been traveling various urban waterways in boats she designs and builds, collecting the tidal debris that accumulates in the harbor. From these floating vantage points, the artist cultivates new perspectives of otherwise familiar landscapes. Lorenz makes videos and installations that document and respond to the debris and discarded objects she encounters. Through printing, casting, or videotaping, Lorenz attempts “to un-know the metropolis by continually exploring it.” The resulting works act as a visual equivalent of beach-combing and tell the story of the artist’s explorations in “collaboration” with the tide, as well as the connections she forges with her occasional passengers.

Check out Marie’s blog about the Tide and Current Taxi here.