Thursday, March 3, 2011

Evil fish and little people

As I mentioned in my last post there was still an image that I wanted to get at 81 St...
So I went back and while waiting for the chance to get that picture I shot a bunch of more stuff there...
Then decided to go to 14 St on the A, C, E and L lines, my most traveled to destination apart from my various home stations of course... This station is home of "Life Underground" by Tom Otterness: Lots of little statues and other pieces installed all over the place... Not sure that I got them all... Some of them are hidden quite well!



Here are the evil (looking) fish from the title of today's entry...



Not so evil looking, but lonely fish...



The shot I came back for: Tough one as the trains disturb the air a lot when they rush into the stations, which makes shooting at slow shutter speeds quite difficult... As well I have noticed that there are some objects that don't seem to draw focus as well as others... The fish on the wall are one example... Another one are some people's irises... Haven't figured out why this occurs at times... But after a lot of frames (the cars had to be in the right position as well) I finally got it!



Station ID sign...



First one of three details of numerous archeological pieces displayed in the station...
They are too dark for a satisfactory image from further away as the contrast between them and the white tiles is way too big...



Teeth...



More scary teeth!



Arriving at 14 St station (A, C, E), upstairs...



Easy to miss this one...



More (little) police...



Ear in column, goes through to other side allowing for communication...



The crocodile (Alligator? Never got the difference!) from the sewers eating money bags... While another money bag person stands by watching... A prescient criticism of the banking crisis???



Strange animal...



Cop guarding big cash... Am not really sure what the artist's obsession with money is about... Is it about the money that he's about to make? Or a criticism of society? I mean, yes there are actually 3 old bank buildings at the corner of 8 Ave and 14 St, but only one of them still functions as a bank... Maybe this would have been more appropriate at the Wall St station?



Big guy giving money to the small woman? Or taking it away?



About to lose her head...



Another one peeking out!



Cop guarding big connected feet? OK then!



Love when art (or posters) in the public space are interacted with by said public!
Was debating if I should get rid of the bag for this image... But am glad that I didn't!



Officer catching fair evader! Some of the pieces are repeated throughout the station... I guess that was a way of saving money... But that doesn't bother me at all since they are placed in different contexts through their respective environments... And not a lot of viewers take the time to look at all of them anyways... (That's at least what I suspect!)



Money lobster eating small people...



Small woman (possibly homeless) sleeping on the platform...



Still holding on!



Cop behind sleeping woman...



Couple traveling with big token... Mmh... I guess since they are already inside the station having only one token is not going to stall their trip... I love that these pieces make me think about what is happening!



Small animals watching over travelers... Easy to miss when you are focused on catching your train...



Money bags standing on cross beam... Ready to jump off? I don't think so... More looking at what's happening below... Would hope benevolently... But that's just me! ;)



Cross beam party!



Part of the fare evasion scenario reused at an actual exit...



Descent to the L level of this station...



Worker doing push ups? Or trying to balance the beam?



Money bags again... The head is worn down by countless commuters touching it as they pass by...
Overhead lighting is very yellow... Completely balancing this to a neutral tone looked weird, so I left it somewhat yellowish...



Commuters making use of the piece as a make shift lost and found spot...



Snake with a top hat chained to the ground... I can only speculate what this could mean...



Art piece on the L level...



Quite beautiful station ID. Had not paid attention to this before as there is usually one L train waiting and I jump on it afraid to miss my connection...



Upstairs again, ready to call it a day... Bottom part of phone art...



Top part of same phone art...



Connected feet. Final detail. Time to go home!

6 comments:

  1. These are so good and so great to go through. It is like a mini-art tour. Perhaps with permission of the artists you do book of the subway station art. Either self-publish or else find a publisher. I love them. Susan Johann

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  2. Thank you, Susan! I hope that it all ends up in a bigger scale publication / book / show... Have to contact the authorities when I feel I have a substantial number of images at hand...

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  3. Dirk,

    Wow, very cool!!
    My favorites are the archeology details,
    I've never seen them before.

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  4. Thank you, Gudrun! I like the archeology details as well, but have tried unsuccessfully to get them in a way that incorporates them into their environment... Maybe that's why I'm still a little biased against those shots... Will revisit in some days with hopefully fresh eyes!

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  5. Bill from BostonMarch 5, 2011 at 7:51 AM

    Really great stuff! If you are ever in Boston, you should check out subway stops like Central Square with their beautiful station IDs. I guess the upside of city government taking its time in renovating these obscures stations is that these works of art are still with us.

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  6. Thank you, Bill! Am going to be in Boston next week, but not sure if I can make time it then. Will definitely keep this in mind! Exciting to think of doing this in other cities as well!:)

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