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MTA Arts & Design


Second Avenue–72nd Street

Vik Muniz

Perfect Strangers, 2017

Glass mosaic and laminated glass

Vik Muniz photographed more than three dozen “characters” who represent the unique and quirky kinds of people one encounters on the subway. These photographs have been recreated in mosaic and installed throughout the mezzanine and entrance areas, populating the station with colorful New Yorkers of all stripes. With the generous expanse of the mezzanine concourse, the figures humanize the space and provide bursts of color and visual interest, providing an opportunity for playful discovery while moving through the station. The main station entrance features a laminated glass canopy at street level depicting a flock of birds, bringing art and nature to the busy street.

Vik Muniz is a Brazilian-born artist based in New York City and Rio de Janeiro who uses unconventional materials and methods to create images culled from pop culture and art history. His work appears in international museum collections such as the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. The Academy-award nominated documentary “Waste Land” featured his collaboration with catadores (waste-pickers) to create masterworks of art from recycled materials. Muniz was an artistic director of the 2016 Paralympic opening ceremony in Brazil.

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