New York is a city where nature was an afterthought. After paving everything over, city planners added some pretty amazing parks to sit in the grass and stare at buildings peaking up over the trees. Soho is a bit lacking in the green space department, but it’s home to the Earth Room, the most surreal form of urban nature in the city.
The Earth Room sounds like it could be a weird new age-y shop with unicorn scented oils and crystals or a room full of piles of dirt. The Earth Room is Soho is a later. It’s an art installation by Walter De Maria consisting of 250 cubic yards of soil spread across part of an apartment floor. It’s a fairly simple concept, but it’s disorienting in the best possible way. The sprawling dirt looks like unplanted farm land, until it stops at a solid white wall or continues through a doorway. Then out the window, you can see all the brick buildings. The smell alone is worth going to the Earth Room; it’s fresher and more crisp than any manufactured park could ever be. It’s not a place where you’re going to spend half a day, but it’s the perfect refuge from the shopping tourist laden streets of Soho.
photo from eatdrinkbetter.com
The Earth Room
141 Wooster Street between Prince and Houston Streets [Soho, Manhattan]
Open Wednesday to Sunday, 12 to 6pm