Update: Joe O’Donoghue’s ‘Happenstansically Beautiful’


In October, I wrote about a chance meeting I had with Brooklyn- based artist named Joe O’Donoghue and his newly exhibited works of art. O’Donoghue recently opened up his gallery and workspace for a show of the work, aptly titled “Happenstansically Beautiful“.


O’Donoghue’s pieces are all the result of his well-known ice sculpting work. The boards are shaped by elemental stress, used and morphed into etchings of time. The hard work that ironically melts away leaves the lasting material art on view now at 218 Plymouth Street in Dumbo.


New developments in the original use of the wood include paint, rust, glasswork, and metal additions.






  1. Joe is my late cousin Sabine’s son. He is the grandson of my uncle Andrew Sabini, who worked in sheet metal making airplanes during WW II and as a roofer, before retiring and sculpting wood.He encouraged Joe and gave him space in his home to start ice sculpting. Joe’s great-grandfather, August Sabini, was a cabinet maker who learned his craft in Italy. Pop-pop, as we knew him was always creating something in his workshop in East Moriches. I’m a a so so songwriter, and as much as it might irk me that Joe is the famous one, the truth is that he is a wonderful artist and I thank you for your attention to him.


    1. Hey Augie, Thanks so much for sharing this fascinating snippet of your family history (and pardon my delayed response- this site has been an archive for a bit)! It was great talking with Joe and seeing his work in action. And I hope you keep writing your songs, because there’s always room for what the pure of heart have to share.


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