The other day while walking through the long hallways of the subway system at Penn Station, I paused for a moment to admire the tile art. Only briefly, of course, since I was in a rush along with my fellow 5.7 million travelers who ride the 22 interconnected subway routes every day. But, throughout NYC's underground transportation world, there are nearly 300 works of art. Three hundred!
If you're up by 167th, you can enjoy the work of Carol Sun, whose brilliantly articulated stained glass panels depict "radiant outdoor urban life with the calm, simple pleasures that are experienced in the home and community." Or maybe you'll be enchanted at 34th Street by Eric Fischl's mosaics of a commuter who is "drawn into the bizarre and surprising world of the circus, meeting animals, clowns, acrobats and fire-breathers along his way to work." While the art may not be your intended destination, the MTA has curated a prolific collection to complement your commute. Before you go underground, check out the collection here.
Are you more of a bus person? Well, Port Authority also has you covered. Amid the hustle and crazy bustle of the bus station, French sculptor Laurence Jenkell makes her US debut with her whimsical works from 'Crossroads of the World, ' Reminiscent of works by Jeff Koons, Jenkell's oversized fiberglass candy wrappers among other colorful, shiny works strike an unlikely but wholly welcomed pose against the backdrop of NYC's busiest bus gateway for 200,000 passengers every day. To learn more about the exhibit, click here.
Few among us enjoy the NYC commute. But taking a moment to appreciate the art underground, well... that just might make your travels a more beautiful experience after all.