Head down river about 30 minutes from the French Quarter in New Orleans to St. Bernard Parish, and turn towards the water.
In the town of Poydras, you'll find a spectacular setting of classic Louisiana landscape of arching oak trees dripping Spanish moss, and a tear-shaped lake carved by the crevasse into a former bayou. Here, too, you'll see Surge, a temporary outdoor sculpture exhibition staged at the sight of a devastating crevasse, or massive breach in the levee along the Mississippi River.
Jennifer Odem created this piece for "Surge," part of Prospect.3 — Photo courtesy of Beth D'Addono
Surge spotlights works by 13 artists who conceived sculptures to recall the destruction and misguided public policies that continue to jeopardize the region's threatened eco-system. Attorney Sidney Torres owns the land and is lending it to the Creative Alliance of New Orleans (CANO) for the exhibition.
"It was all a horrible mistake, misguided," says Torres of the intentional levee breech that destroyed much of St. Bernard Parish back in 1927.
Torres is planning an indoor gallery space, as well, on the site, a renovated home with strong natural light and an impressive three-story spiral staircase.
"This is such a beautiful area, so close to New Orleans. I want other people to discover it," says Torres.
Conceived in the tradition of the great international exhibitions – such as the Venice Biennale and the Bienal de São Paulo – Prospect.3 is designed to showcase new artistic practices from around the world in settings that are both historic and culturally exceptional in New Orleans and the Louisiana Gulf region.
Most exhibitions are free, and many call attention to issues of race, social justice and environmental threat. More than 42,000 visitors were drawn to past Prospect exhibitions, adding up to millions of dollars pumped into the city's economy. This year, some 58 artists from near and far contribute their vision.
So much art all over town, where do you start? There's an app for that: text "P3NOLA" to 99-000 to get a handy guide on your smart phone.
And note that there's a concentration of art in a few of the 18 official exhibition venues scattered throughout New Orleans, including the Ashe Cultural Arts Center on burgeoning Oretha Castle Haley Boulevard, the Contemporary Arts Center at 900 Camp St., the Ogden Museum of Southern Art also on Camp Street and The New Orleans Museum of Art in City Park.
The growing St. Claude Avenue corridor in the Bywater is home to a handful of galleries, too, and you'll find more in the Warehouse District fanning out from Julia Street.
Like so many aspects of New Orleans, Prospect.3 is complicated, multi-layered, open to interpretation and not always easy to pinpoint.
Good thing there's plenty of time to explore.