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MTA Arts & Design


Westchester Square-East Tremont Avenue

Romare Bearden

City of Glass, 1993 (Proposal created by artist, 1982)

Faceted glass triptych over stairway

The hundreds of brilliant facets of Romare Bearden's glass triptych pulsate with energy, connected by the black thread of a subway train wending past tenements and skyscrapers. The work began as a collage maquette; this was then transformed into a glowing artwork in jewel-like colored glass. The three-paneled work is installed on the wall at the stairway landing.

Bearden was an accomplished artist and City of Light skillfully weaves together the spirit found in his beloved music, social concerns, and interest in trains. The work was the result of a collaboration between Bearden and the fabricators, Benoit Gilsoul and Helmut Schardt. Following the artist's death in 1988, they were able to complete the work from the preparatory studies and instructions he had left behind.

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