Leo Villareal's Neon Subway Art at Bleecker Street
Georgina Wells

You won’t even have to get off the subway to see the latest New York public art project, thanks to a new installation on the uptown platform of the Bleecker Street 6 station. Leo Villareal’s Hive, a honeycomb-shaped network of LED lights, now illuminates a pocket of the station’s ceiling, over what will soon be a point of transfer between the 6 and the B, D, and F lines. While mosaics are the traditional mode of New York City subway art, Hive better reflects the technology, speed, and intensity of city transportation through its constantly shifting colors and patterns. Villareal aptly based the piece on mathematician John Conway’s Game of Life, a mathematical model of oscillating patterns meant to simulate evolving life forms.

The project was commissioned by the MTA’s Arts for Transit, an initiative launched in 1985 to enhance the aesthetic experience of public transportation. Hive, which is designed to be as durable as the mosaics, will be permanently brightening east side commutes with its flux of colored lights.

Images via DNAinfo.