As NYC Subways Start To Get Busy Again, MTA Updates Digital Art Program In Hub Stations

June 4, 2021 by Dave Haynes

Here’s the latest digital artwork that’s being intermingled with DOOH advertising and other content on big displays at major subway hubs in New York City.

This one is at the getting-busy-again Fulton Center in lower Manhattan. It is part of the transit authority’s commissioned by MTA Arts & Design program, which commissions public art to run on the screens. The pieces are also running at 42 St-Bryant Park and Atlantic Av-Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

“Arts & Design is thrilled to launch three new commissions to welcome our riders’ return to the transit system,” says Yaling Chen, Deputy Director of MTA Arts & Design. “In this time of global crisis, artists are reshaping their thinking and practices as a tool for reflection, connection and documentation. The playful cyberscape in the digital artwork at Fulton Center touches upon our amplified reliance on virtual platforms. The photographic exhibitions seeks conformity from nature surrounding us. We hope each work will bring a moment of connectedness and joy as the riders resume their daily commuting ritual.”

The digital pieces include Handcrafted Reality, a new site-specific artwork by Jaye Rhee that “explores the human relationship with digital screens and notions of virtual space. Created during the pandemic, Rhee constructed detailed three-dimensional objects that assemble to create fantastical moving tableaux. Recalling early screensaver software and popular computer games in this timely new commission, Rhee’s whimsical work alludes to the collapsing boundary between the real and the virtual and captures an essential aspect of daily life that is increasingly spent in front of screens.”

The large scale screens throughout the Fulton Center complex feature compositions made up of objects that the artist created by hand referring to familiar digital environments and two chihuahuas dressed up as Bambi roaming around a virtual landscape. The work takes advantage of the 52-channel network throughout the Fulton Center complex by immersing the viewer in the surreal playland, offering an alternative to the typical content commuters encounter on their way.

The digital artworks air simultaneously for two minutes at the top of each hour on 52 digital screens throughout the Fulton Center complex.

The MTA Arts & Design Digital Art program is presented with technical support from Westfield Properties and ANC Sports.

More detail on all of the art pieces here …

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