subway art.

January 21, 2013

bedford park boulevard - community garden bedford park boulevard - community garden bedford park boulevard - community garden I’m a bonafied subway enthusiast. Forgive my inner-Pollyanna and know that I feel honestly grateful each time that I slip between those stainless steel doors and find myself a seat on my way to anywhere. For me, the MTA’s Arts for Transit program is just icing on the cake of subway thrills. For most subway travelers, time spent underground is more nearly associated with sensory stimulation in the form of crowds and mysterious odors and gum stuck in unpleasant spaces than it is fine art. I’m not so naive as to not understand why, but I do think that if you’re able to ignore the everyday drudgery of subway travel and take an extra look around, you might be surprised by what you find.

On a trip yesterday to the New York Botanical Garden, I spotted my latest favorite work. Andrea Deszö’s Community Garden mosaic is something straight out of Alice in Wonderland. I’m tempted to join a tour and see all the fancified stations for myself, but I admit there’s also something lovely about coming upon them au hasard. In the end, it’s all just more proof that if you allow yourself a moment of wonder, you’ll stumble across something worthy of the exercise.

Carrying On (designed by one of my very favorite professors)
Signs of Life
Memories of 23rd Street
Other things:
Arts for Transit App
Subway Art Tour

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  • Reply Cole Bentz January 21, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    I could get lost in those tiles, especially the ones making up the greenery…

  • Reply the southern hostess January 21, 2013 at 4:14 pm

    Just beautiful! I often think about taking photos of subway art and never do. So glad you captured this!

    • Reply Erin February 4, 2013 at 2:05 am

      The ones in the trains? I love those, too!

  • Reply J+H @ Beyond The Stoop January 21, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    my favorite is the super wide and short MTA prints, especially the one with cartoon subway riders… totally depicts a typical subway with all types of people on it 🙂

  • Reply Sophie January 21, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    I love mosaic and this one is so lovely!

  • Reply To The River January 21, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    I rememeber when I was young watching Subway by Luc Besson made a subway kind of raw magic place for me and it hasn't changed, even I'm only using subway when travelling, since my city doesn't have it. Beautiful mosaic…

  • Reply Chloe Moon January 21, 2013 at 4:40 pm

    I definitely want to make my way to the Botanical Gardens this year for the Orchid exhibit so I'll make sure to check out this subway art when I'm near there!! =)It's so pretty!!

    Ergo – Blog

  • Reply Jennifer Allison January 21, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    sublime. thank you for sharing! i'm a fan also of the beauty that can surprise you underground, be it visual art or the the occasional musician. always makes my soul stop and pay attention…a good thing. 🙂

  • Reply Katie January 21, 2013 at 5:38 pm

    Amazing! And your last sentence was beautiful.

  • Reply annton beate Schmidt January 21, 2013 at 5:47 pm

    that mosaic is amazing!

  • Reply Erin January 21, 2013 at 6:33 pm

    I'm a big subway nerd too. The 23rd Street NR station (Memories of 23rd Street) is my absolute favorite! I love standing underneath the hats and reading who they belong to. The Natural History Museum stop (81st Street BC stop) is also very fun:

    • Reply Erin February 4, 2013 at 2:04 am

      Yes! I love the dinosaur shadows especially!

  • Reply Kristina January 21, 2013 at 9:58 pm

    Such an amazing mosaic, so beautiful! I love art in unusual places, so the subway is the perfect location!!

  • Reply Sarah Dee January 21, 2013 at 11:02 pm

    Those tiles are wonderful!


  • Reply Anonymous January 21, 2013 at 11:31 pm

    were you a student of Janet's?

    • Reply Erin February 4, 2013 at 2:01 am

      Yes! She's terrific!

  • Reply tinajo January 22, 2013 at 7:42 am

    That looks really pretty!

  • Reply Selene January 23, 2013 at 1:03 pm


    • Reply Erin February 4, 2013 at 2:02 am

      beautiful! thanks for sharing!

  • Reply Soledad February 4, 2013 at 1:48 am

    I've been following your blog for a couple months now and just saw this post (I have over 100 blog feeds in my email waiting to be read after my six weeks vacation!). This post represents what I like about you, and what I feel is missing a lot on the web: just open eyes, waiting to discover the beauty beyond the obvious. I'm looking forward to move to NY and never loose that ability to be amazed. Thank you!

    • Reply Erin February 4, 2013 at 2:03 am

      Soledad, Thanks so much for your kind words! So glad that you find a space like that here. Good luck uncovering this wild city!


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