This cartographic work of art, installed on a sidewalk, was conceived as an immense circuit that expresses the democratic power of the subway for the almost free of charge mobility it allows. A liberty of movement that we often forget even though without it, our societies can’t function anymore.
Built with materials that can also be found on the subway, steel, concrete and light, the map is part of the patrimony of the city of New York since its construction. Acclaimed by the Arts Commission of NY, Françoise Schein received the Prize for Excellence in Design for this curious original sculpture that in 1985 already predicted the digital age through classical materials.
The 1980s were the time of an accelerated capitalist world where kids in the Bronx and other neighborhoods didn’t belong anywhere, except in the walls of the subway cars, which they covered with their names in graffiti.
In its screeching noise, the subways show the will to exist of thousands of underprivileged young people that looked for their place in the contemporary world.
Prix Excellence in Design, New-York City Art Commission, 1985
— Projet Subway Map Floating on a New-York Sidewalk”, New-York, U.S.A
Hans Van de Bovenkamp
PARTNERS AND SUPPORT
Terrazzo Company, NY