Cathedral Parkway (110th Street) Subway Art [Detail 2]

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Migrations (1999).
Artist: Christopher Wynter.
Detail 2 of the 110th street glass tile mosaic art as seen on the platform at Cathedral Parkway (Central Park West and 110th street) for the downtown-bound B and C trains (and the downtown-bound local A trains, which run nights and weekends). You cannot easily see this piece from the uptown-bound train platform.
Image: GrrlScientist 9 September 2008 [larger view].

At Cathedral Parkway, Harlem’s southern boundary, three large mosaic murals were created that refer to migration and African homelands. “Overall, the panels present the ideas of uprooting, migration, and progress in symbolic form,” says artist Christopher Wynter. He further explains that the blocks of color differentiate various African ancestral homelands, and the circular symbol represents the n’kis, or sacred place concept, of the Nkongo people. Houses on stilts suggest Central African buildings, while horizontal bands of color denote village paths. Wheels and walking feet describe faraway destinations, according to Wynter, and walking feet describe faraway destinations, according to Wynter, and reference the mass movements of Africans throughout history. The station is located below Frederick Douglass Circle. Douglass, the abolitionist crusader, is also depicted.

I have photographed glass tile mosaic artworks from several NYC subway stations now, so far, all are westside Manhattan subway lines; including the 42nd street/Times Square up[stairs platform (1, 2 & 3 trains), West 66th street/Lincoln Center Station (1 train), West 34th Street/Pennsylvania Station (A, C & E trains), Chambers Street (A & C trains), Houston Street (1 train), Pennsylvania “Penn” station (1, 2 & 3 trains) [subway art archives] and, my favorite subway station of all, the American Museum of Natural History station at 81st and Central Park West (B & C trains) [AMNH archives].


About GrrlScientist

grrlscientist is the pseudonym of an evolutionary biologist and ornithologist who writes about evolution, ethology, and ecology, especially in birds. After earning a degree in microbiology (thesis focus: virology) and working at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, she earned her PhD in zoology from the University of Washington in Seattle, where she studied the molecular correlates of testosterone and behaviour in white-crowned sparrows. She then worked a Chapman Postdoctoral Fellow at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, where she studied the speciation and distribution of lories and other parrots throughout the South Pacific Islands. A discarded scientist, she returned to her roots: writing. Formerly hosted by The Guardian (UK), she now writes about science for Forbes and for the non-profit think tank, the Evolution Institute and she writes podcasts for BirdNote Radio. An avid lifelong birder and aviculturist, she lives with a flock of songbirds and parrots somewhere in Germany.
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0 Responses to Cathedral Parkway (110th Street) Subway Art [Detail 2]

  1. Anon says:

    Dumb question…
    So I was in NYC a couple of weeks ago, and (purely because of you) I kept my eyes out while riding the subways. I swear, I saw nothing! Nothing but notices of rat poison, or of the importance of keeping behind the yellow line. I might have seen a flash of this or that, but nothing I would have even though to take a picture of.
    I guess the question is, how are you so cool?
    Or the comment is, you must really be something special to see what others miss even when they look for it…
    Additional comment… thanks for finding these things. It really is more work than you make it seem. Thanks.