Olimpia Zagnoli (top)
Andrea Dezsö (bottom)

William Low

Greg Ruth

New York View: MTA Arts & Design Illustrates the City- Opening Reception
New York View
Connecting Commuters and Culture: MTA Arts and Design
New York View: MTA Arts & Design Illustrates the City

June 03, 2015 - August 15, 2015

 Sophie Blackall

Over the past thirty years, MTA Arts & Design (formerly Arts for Transit) has commissioned hundreds of artists to create award-winning visual and performing arts to enliven the public transit experience in New York City and its surrounding communities. The Arts & Design team is responsible for Poetry in Motion, photography, digital arts, the Music Under New York program, graphic posters, special events and more than 250 permanent percent for art projects in subway and rail stations, with fifty more in progress.

New York View celebrates a selection of work by artists, illustrators and graphic designers who have been commissioned by the MTA to design posters and who have been selected to create permanent public work for the MTA system. We examine the way the artists move from pen and paper to more durable materials like glass, mosaic and stainless steel as work is translated to become a permanent fixture in the neighborhoods of New York.

Beginning with esteemed designer Milton Glaser’s 1986 project at Astor Place which riffs on the original 1904 architectural elements of the station, the exhibit includes original artwork, photos and samples of permanent projects from artists including Andrea Arroyo, George Bates, Raul Colón, Béatrice Coron, Andrea Dezsö, Felipe Galindo, William Low, Takayo Noda, Peter Sis, Owen Smith and more.

Illustrators from around the world have played a significant role in creating artwork that reaches into the daily lives of the 2.6 billion transit riders who use the MTA system every year. Since 1991, New Yorkers’ daily commutes have been made brighter by the 98 commissioned graphic posters and art cards installed in subway cars and subway stations, and this year, in city buses. In the lower gallery, a salon-style selection of original artwork by illustrators and artists such as Jonathan Bartlett, Sophie Blackall, Marcos Chin, R. Gregory Christie, Susan Farrington, Whitfield Lovell, Victo Ngai, Julia Rothman, Greg Ruth, Carlo Stanga, Yuko Shimizu, Frank Viva, Olimpia Zagnoli and many others who have created subway posters and art cards over the last 25 years.

In New York View we celebrate the change that art and artists can make in communities by highlighting some favorites from the Arts & Design program, a diverse and growing collection of incredible original artwork that illustrates life in our city.

Copies of “New York’s Underground Art Museum: MTA Arts & Design” by Sandra Bloodworth and William Ayres will be available to purchase in the Society's Museum Shop as well as posters and art cards from the award-winning Arts & Design poster collection. 

An Opening Reception will be held on Friday, June 5th with musical performance by Robert Anderson Jazz Duo.

In conjunction with the exhibit, the Society and MTA Arts & Design will host two panel discussions.
On June 6th, Deputy Director Amy Hausmann talks with artist George Bates, Beatrice Coron and Susan Farrington, who have been commissioned to create public projects for this vast underground collection. This panel, "New York View: MTA Arts & Design Illustrates the City Artist Talk", will go from 1-3PM and follows brunch at the Society.  Learn more...
A panel discussion titled "Connecting Commuters and Culture: MTA Arts and Design" will be held on June 16th, with material culture art historian and author William Ayres, Ph.D., Arts & Design Founder Ronay Menschel, Arts & Design Director and author Sandra Bloodworth, and illustrator and children’s book author William Low. This lecture is supported by a grant from the New York Council for the Humanities.  Learn more...

And on July 9th A Special Sketch Night will feature music by Music Under New York performers Mecca Bodega, Melissa Elledge, Jim Graseck, and Moses Josiah who will also serve as models for the evening.

This exhibit is brought to you by MTA Arts & Design and the Society of Illustrators. To learn more please visit their websites by selecting their logo:

New York View (2014) (c) Olimpia Zagnoli.
Commissioned by Metropolitan Transportation Authority Arts & Design

Missed Connections (2011) (c) Sophie Blackall.
Commissioned by Metropolitan Transportation Authority Arts & Design

Community Garden (2006) (c) Andrea Dezsö 
Commissioned by Metropolitan Transportation Authority Arts & Design  

Greeting the Dawn (2007) (c) William Low
Commissioned by Metropolitan Transportation Authority Arts & Design  
Catch A Ride (2010) (c) Greg Ruth
Commissioned by Metropolitan Transportation Authority Arts & Design