Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside

For this challenge, all my photos are of inside New York City Subway Stations, where I have spent quite a lot of my life.

Inside 42nd Street Subway Station with the Roy Leichenstein’s Mural.
Inside 57th Street Subway Station with Mosaic Mural by Elizabeth Murray
Bleecker Street #6 line Subway Station

Public Art in New York City


Today I traveled into the city even though it was raining. I saw a lot of public art which I took videos and photos of and then made the above video when I got home. One reason I love this city so much is the public art that is so much everywhere, plus the great buildings by great architects. Today I rode on this subway car (the shuttle between Times Square and Grand Central Station) that was painted on the inside like a rain forest, even the seats, and on the outside had a frog on it. I always liked graffiti, when it was good, but institutions like the MTA seem to only approve of representational painting. Anyway, I hope you like my little video. I just got a new computer yesterday in order to make better videos. At least now they will be in H.D. Presently, both a teddy bear and a lady bug have an artistic presence on Park Avenue in NYC.

Visiting the Trump Bar

While I was walking around the City, I got very tired. I was near the Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue. Trump has a bar there called The Trump Bar. Such an original name. I was so tired that I went in and ordered an Irish Coffee. It was the worse Irish Coffee I’ve ever had in my life. The coffee wasn’t hot and the  bartender, whom I can’t believe ever went to bartending school, put a lemon twist in it. Have you ever heard of an Irish Coffee with a lemon twist? And no whip cream on top.  I don’t think I’ve ever had an Irish Coffee anyplace on earth where they didn’t put whip cream on top.  I should have said something, but I never do. On top of that, it cost $13.50, when every where else in New York, it only cost $9.00 for an Irish Coffee even in the high-end restaurants. My advice–when in NYC, stay away from the places that mainly cater to tourists. New York seems too expensive to tourists. That’s only because they don’t know where to go. When I recently visited L.A., L.A. was just as expensive as New York City, as far as the normal places to eat go–not the tourists traps, which usually are in or near hotels.  In New York City, the tourists’ traps are mainly in Times Square, are anything associated with Donald Trump, and around 5th or 6th Avenue and 57th St.–the heart of midtown.

I found this video on Youtube of an Improv filmed in the Trump Tower Building.  The bar is on the level above the escalators and next to them. Of course, I couldn’t be so fortunate as to have something like this happen while I’m there.

I love these improve’s. I wish I could witness one.

Teddy Bear on Park Ave. Sculpture by Urs Fischer, a Swiss Artist

Even More New York Subway Art

[At end of post, view the art gallery opening in a subway station.  It’s hilarious.]

As I wander around New York City, via the subway, I keep finding more subway art. These are a few great things I’ve found since my last post on this subject.  One thing about looking for subway art, is that it gives me something to do when I’m riding the subway:  look out the window for art as we race through a station.  I realize there’s many great works of art at stations that I would never frequent in all eternity, but one only does what they can.

7thAve-57th St. Subway Station

This collage above reflects that this subway station is very near Carnegie Hall.   Each subway station in NYC is designed differently, often with art to reflect the neighborhood above.

These Hats represent the garment district which is in the neighborhood above this station.  Each hat has a placard below it saying who wore that hat.  There are about 20 of these hats in both the uptown and the downtown “N” and “R” Subway Train Stations at 23rd Street and 5th Avenue.

Placard below says Thomas Edison Inventor
Placard says Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney Sculptor and Art Patron

The mural below the “Hats”  is another reflection of the neighborhood above the subway station–an area of Greenwich Village which New Yorkers call the West Village, and the mural below is an artistic interpretation of well-known people who once lived in the West Village.  However, it seems strange to me, that an artist would forget about Edward Hopper who lived in this area.

The Greenwich Village Murals by Lee Brozgol and Students of P.S. 41 (1994)

[I suggest you follow the above link to find out more detailed information on this mural and others by Lee Brozgol]

Below is a mural of three mosaic and ceramic pictures. It’s at the Sheridan Square-Christropher St. #1 Subway Station in the West Village. I tried to make a panorama shot of all three pictures together, but it came out too distorted. When shooting, I couldn’t back up any further without falling onto the subway tracks. So below are all three pictures separately starting with the one on the far left.

There are more murals than the one featured here and one in the heading, but I didn’t know that until I researched it on the Internet.  So I will be going back for the others to add here.  The murals all have their own individual names.  The one below is called “Bohemians.”   Below is a chart that tells what famous Village person the drawing  represents.

At the Sheridan Square-Christopher Street #1 Subway Station
Also at the Sheridan Square Subway Station
At the Sheridan Square-Christopher Street #1 Subway Station
Bohemians Chart of Who is Who in Mural

You might be interested in reading my previous post on this subject called “More New York Subway Art.”  Before that was New York Subway Art.

More New York Subway Art

An Al Held painting in mosaic at the 53rd St. and Lexington Ave. Subway Station

(below) Mosaic that I found at the 86th St. and Lexington Subway station. I couldn’t find a plaque so I don’t know who they are by. It is based on the wheel of fortune motif.


Below: Mosaic’s from the #1 subway line at Houston Street in Greenwich Village.  These mosaics are from a series of 5 called “Platform Diving” (1994) by New York artist Deborah Brown.  They seem to equate being underground in the subway with being underwater.

Platform Diving–Notice how this is the #1 subway car and these mosaics are in the #1 subway station.

Platform Diving
Platform Diving

You might be interested in reading my post called “New York Subway Art,” which was the precursor to this post.

New York Subway Art

Tribeca Resident, Elizabeth Murray (1940-2007) (Photo copied from the NY Times Internet site) at 59th Street Subway Station in front of her Mural.

On flicker, where I put most of my photography, I’ve started a new set of photos that I named Subway Art. I’m trying to make a photo essay of the art that appears in New York Subway Stations, some of it by very famous artists like Roy Lichtenstein, whose mural in the Times Square subway station I presented in this blog on August 19, 2010. Today I visited the Elizabeth Murray mural in the subway station at 59th Street and Lexington Avenue.  It’s so huge, however, I could only photograph pieces of it.  As you can see, her art is very whimsical.  It’s all done in mosaic tile, as is all of the subway art that I’ve seen so far, because that’s what lasts.

Elizabeth Murray's Mural at 59th Street Subway Station
Elizabeth Murray’s Mural at 59th Street and Lexington Ave. Subway Station
Section of Mural by Elizabeth Murray in the Subway Station at 59th St. and Lexington Ave.
Section of Mural by Elizabeth Murray in 59th St. Subway Station
Elizabeth Murray
An Elizabeth Murray mosaic at the 23rd St. and Ely Ave. Station in Queens
Mosaic Mural by Al Held
Mural by Al Held at 53rd and Lexington St. Subway Station
One of Elizabeth Murray’s Teacups

Elizabeth Murray liked to use tea cups as an image in her work and is known for them. Because of that the 59th Street subway station has mosaic tea cups all over the place. tea cups with tea in them, which you can see that her tea cups has, because their is steam coming up, is a symbol of love and friendship.

Yesterday ran into another Elizabeth Murray at the Museum of Modern Art. I decided to put it in here even though it’s not in a subway. She also has one work of art at the Metropolitan.

Elizabeth Murray Painting at MOMA

You might be interested in reading my post called “More Subway Art,” which is rather a continuation of this post.