Reopened 86th Street B,C station boasts new murals inspired by Central Park and Beaux-Arts architecture

October 30, 2018

Photo © 6sqft

The 86th Street B, C station reopened last week after five months of renovations and upgrades. The improved Central Park West station now features six colorful mosaic and ceramic murals translated from artist Joyce Kozloff’s “Parkside Portals” artwork, which depicts different perspectives of the neighborhood. The art shifts from aerial views of Central Park to close-ups of Beaux-Arts and Art Deco elements found on the iconic facades of surrounding buildings.

86th street, joyce kozloff, nyc subway art

86th street, joyce kozloff, nyc subway art

The artwork of Kozloff, who was a part of the Pattern and Decoration art movement of the ’70s and lived on the UWS for a decade, uses mapping and geography to create layers of cities and their histories, according to the MTA.

86th street, joyce kozloff, nyc subway art

86th street, joyce kozloff, nyc subway art

As one ode to the history of the park, the artwork includes a map of Seneca Village, the 5-acre settlement founded by free African American landowners in 1825. The settlement, the first of its kind in the city, lasted until 1857, when the construction of Central Park began.

86th street, joyce kozloff, nyc subway art

86th street, joyce kozloff, nyc subway art

Kozloff’s style is apparent in the station’s murals, which used Google Earth technology for the aerial park views. The art is framed with the trees of Central Park during the four seasons of the year. Kozloff worked with Miotto Mosaic Art Studios and Travisanutto Giovanni SRL to translate her paintings into tiles and glass mosaics.

86th street, joyce kozloff, nyc subway art

In addition to the bright new murals, 86th Street station also received substantial repair work. The MTA fixed structural steel and concrete, repaired stairways, added new railings and guardrails, cleaned and repaired damaged tiles and concrete floors, and replaced platform edges.

The authority also installed new tech features, like digital wayfinding and customer information screens, countdown clocks, USB charging stations, and security cameras.


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Artist @joycekozloff has created new artwork, “Parkside Portals”, for the newly improved 86th Street (B,C) station. The six colorful glass mosaic and ceramic tile murals offer a view of the #UpperWestSide through a micro and macro lens. The perspective shifts from aerial views of #CentralParkWest using #GoogleEarth technology, to a zoom on the lavish design elements found on the neighborhood’s majestic building facades, which Kozloff embellishes with her eye for color and knowledge of the community, from the decade she lived on the Upper West Side. Framing these details are the trees of #CentralPark during the four #seasons. The artwork pays homage to the architecture of Central Park West, and its beaux arts and art deco ornamentation, and includes a map of #SenecaVillage, a 5-acre settlement founded in 1825 of mostly African American landowners, the first such community in the city. It was situated where Central Park now lies. Kozloff collaborated closely with #MiottoMosaics and #Travisanutto, Giovanni SRL who translated her intricate paintings into glazed tiles and glass mosaics. #MTAArts #JoyceKozloff #86Street #ParksidePortals #subwayart #publicart #UWS #CPW #beauxart #artdeco #mosaic

A post shared by MTA Arts & Design (@mtaartsdesign) on Oct 26, 2018 at 10:40am PDT


All photos © 6sqft

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