A rendering of 180 River Drive South, a new residential tower in the Newport section of Jersey City — Courtesy: LeFrak
By Joshua Burd
The LeFrak and Simon families have picked a local artist to design and execute a feature piece for a new luxury apartment tower in Jersey City’s iconic Newport neighborhood.
In a news release, the developers said the piece by Anthony Boone will measure roughly 15 feet long by four feet high and will be located prominently in the main lobby of The Beach, a project slated for 180 River Drive. LeFrak recently worked with the Jersey City Office of Cultural Affairs to hold a citywide competition seeking artists, which drew 15 proposals and resulted in several finalists being selected for a second-round review.
“I’m extremely excited that I am the chosen artist for the Beach at Newport,” Boone said. “Words cannot describe how truly honored and humbled I am to share my work with the Jersey City community. As a native and lifelong resident of New Jersey who resigned from Conrail after 28 years as a freight conductor to pursue my dream as an artist, I can only hope to inspire everyone who comes across my work to ‘follow your dreams.’ ”
As the winner, Boone will be awarded $12,000 plus $500 for supplies to complete the piece by April 28, 2021, according to a news release. Each of the five other finalists will receive an honorarium of $250.
They include Jersey City residents Catherine Hart, Philip Robinson and Allison Green, along with Matthew Cox, whose studio is in the city, and Adam Sultan, who works in the city.
“We are so excited by Anthony’s design and eagerly look forward to having his creation grace The Beach’s lobby,” said Jeremy Farrell, LeFrak’s managing director of community and government affairs. “Anthony’s career as a Conrail conductor and as a lifelong Jersey City resident made him the perfect candidate to create the art centerpiece of our newest building in Newport, which was in large part a former rail yard.”
In the announcement, LeFrak said the design of The Beach is a reflection of its location on the Hudson River and the adjacent “urban beach” component of Newport Green, a recently developed park space. The building’s exterior design is composed of a cool palate of precast concrete, glass and tones of gray metal, while accent balconies on the main tower form a zigzag wave-like impression complete with blue railing glass.
The interior design of the building uses natural marble and granite on the floors with wood and brass accents on the walls, the news release said. LeFrak said it chose the winning proposal because it complements the building’s design and features.
“Congratulations to the winner whose original piece of art will help shape the public space not only inside Newport, but also as an extension of Jersey City’s expansive portfolio and burgeoning arts culture citywide, which we have worked to strengthen in recent years — as is evident with our announcement … to restore Loew’s Theatre for more local live performances,” Mayor Steven Fulop said. “We always encourage community-building initiatives and we appreciate LeFrak’s showing of support to our local artists.”