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Madison Square Park Conservancy is responsible for the maintenance of the park’s lawns. Lawns are open daily for public use starting at 10 AM through 9 PM, weather permitting. Lawns are closed on Parade Days.  Learn more about park hours and rules by visiting our FAQ page.

100 Wooden School Desks Are Sitting in Madison Square Park (Time Out New York)

Jan 24, 2022 | Art, Press

100 Wooden School Desks Are Sitting in Madison Square Park (Time Out New York)

The Brier Patch Exhibition, featuring school desks on the park lawn bursting with tree limbs.

The work “Brier Patch” by artist Hugh Hayden is an installation on view through April.

If you pass by Madison Square Park you’ll notice about 100 wooden elementary school-style desks sprouting tree branches—a somewhat eerie scene.

It’s part of Artist Hugh Hayden’s new installation called “Brier Patch” and is spread out over four lawns in the park. On view through April 24, the commission hopes to bring to mind the disparities within the education system and the idea of the American Dream while also calling on folklore with tangled branches emerging from the desks.

The largest group of desks (48 of them) is arranged in a grid on the Oval Lawn while another smaller grid sits on Sparrow Lawn across from the playground in the Northeast corner of the park. Two desks sit on Elm Lawn. Finally, another group can be found on the Veteran’s Lawn without branches, allowing for the public to interact with the installation and sit in the desks.

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