Last week, I stumbled upon a hidden gem in New York City – I am sure I could add it to our list of NYC places to discover that most visitor’s and local’s never go to! I finally made it to the magnificent Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in the Morningside Heights neighborhood on the Upper West Side – the 4th largest Christian church in the world, by the way, and well worth a visit in itself! – when I saw a big bronze sculpture in the courtyard next to the church. The massive sculpture (40ft /12m high) turned out to be the Peace Fountain, a quite bizarre sculpture depicting a huge crab, the decapitated head of Satan and giraffes (among other things), which was built by artist Greg Wyatt in 1985.
Around the fountain there are several smaller bronze statues which range from animals to famous people such as Gandhi and Einstein to books, some of them halfway grown over by ivy and all showing scenes from fairytales or other well-known quotes. It felt like a little wonderland to me and there are so many little details to uncover! I already returned twice to take in more of the garden, but also to escape the busy street life of Amsterdam Avenue (off which I live) and to have a moment of peace and silence. It is a gorgeous little green oasis in Upper Manhattan and you might find me there several more times with a cup of coffee and a book while I am still in New York.
The Cathedral is located at the corner of West 110th Street and Amsterdam Avenue, if you’d like to check out this wonderfully weird garden for yourself.