Updated 07/21/2012 05:47 PM
MTA Unveils Digital Art At Bleecker Street Station
The MTA unveiled the first permanent digital artwork in a subway station Friday at the staircase that will soon connect Bleecker Street subway riders between the uptown 6 train and the B, D and F lines. NY1's Tina Redwine filed the following report.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
The latest sculpture commissioned by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and unveiled on Friday is causing riders to stop in their tracks.
The piece by Leo Villareal, called "Hive," is on the uptown platform of the 6 train in the Bleecker Street station.
It lures riders into what what will soon be the Bleecker Street transfer, allowing riders to connect between the 6 in both directions and the B, D and F.
LED lights flash in different-colored patterns, speed and intensity according to the artist's programming.
Sandra Bloodworth, the director of MTA Arts for Transit, said the artist based the work on John Conway's mathematical formula "The Game of Life".
"You can see it begins, that it reproduces, that it moves, it lives," she said. "Sometimes it stops, dies. In many ways, it's sort of not only evoking the movement and transportation but that process of life.
Riders are feeling it.
"The artwork is beautiful," said one. "Makes the train station looks alive."
"The lights, you don't see much of that," said a second. "Nice to have something different in New York."
"Everybody will get a kick out of this," said a third.
It was an experiment to have art in the subway reflect the technology that is being integrated into the subway system. Yet it needed to last as long as the ancient medium of mosaics most commonly used in the subway.
"We worked with our in-house guys to make sure this would be durable and we could change the light bulbs, so to speak," Bloodworth said.
The MTA said it's still finalizing the cost but they said it is less than one percent of the construction.