A Taste of the 80s


Early Saturday morning friend of Subway Art Blog, Halopigg, spotted a rare subway car covered in colorful graffiti. Here’s his recount of the experience:

I was coming home from a night out in Manhattan and at around 2am I was standing on the Myrtle Broadway platform waiting for the M Train when this freshly painted train rolled up. I could smell it before I could see it. I immediately grabbed my phone and started to snap a few pictures. I hopped on the train but then realized it was the last stop on the shuttle so I had another minute or two to get out and take a few more pictures. I was super surprised and the people around me either thought I was crazy or I was the person that did it.

Seeing a graffiti covered subway car in person has become rarer than seeing a shooting star through the New York smog. The MTA has a policy to pull cars like this one out of service immediately. This strategy has been so effective in fighting it that most New York-based graffiti writers don’t even bother—it’s usually Europeans and other out-of-towners that come and do their thing for a souvenir photos.

The pieces appear to be the work of LUPY, BOAT,  B36 and others. B36 most likely stands for “Beta 36” a graffiti crew based in Italy. If you have any more info on this crew, please share in the comments!

Special thanks to Halopigg for sharing his awesome photos. Check him out on Instagram.


M Shuttle


Lupy 2

Subway Art Blog’s 4th Birthday Celebration

Believe it or not, Subway Art Blog turns 4 this month. To celebrate, we are having a party in conjunction with Goodbye Hello, a photography exhibition by Mike Ion and release of Carnage zine #3. I will also be releasing two zines: my own SubCulture #2 and NOXER DOD’s first zine, No Love.

I will be giving away limited edition posters to the first 25 people that stop by the event and mention Subway Art Blog, so come visit, have a beer, buy some awesome zines and check out some great photography!

Graff Cal has all the details.

This Week in Instagram

With the sudden explosion of users on Instagram, I’ve decided to start a new feature called “This Week in Instagram”. The idea is to spotlight some of the awesome subway art getting posted there. If you dabble with the ‘gram, take this opportunity to discover/follow some super cool artists and photographers!


Many more after the jump! Continue reading “This Week in Instagram”

Phillip Romano – Tile Series

Let’s get this out of the way now — you may have noticed that the artist I am speaking about in this post has the same last name as myself. This is because we are womb-mates.

My brother, Phillip Romano, is a young photographer finishing up an art degree at Harlem’s City College of New York. He is exhibiting work this week, called Tile Series, which I would be interested in talking about on Subway Art Blog even if we didn’t share genes.

In this work, subway tiles are the canvases and commuters are the artists. The drips, spills, scuffs and scrapes people make on the floors of subway stations become unintentional art. The photos seem to evoke Jackson Pollock’s action paintings, not only by appearance, but also their interest in the subconscious.

The way in which the images are displayed is worth noting as well. Phillip explains:

The tile series pieces each document single markings found on subway platforms. Each tile is photographed, printed, and mounted separately and then arranged in their original order on the wall.

You can find three pieces from this project at CCNY’s annual photography exhibition, open from May 3rd – May 14th, with an opening reception May 6th, 5-8pm. Details can be found on the event’s Facebook page. More of the tile series and other work by Phillip can be found on his portfolio site: Phillip Romano Photography.

The Former New York – Photos by Richard Sandler

Photographer Richard Sandler will be exhibiting work at the Millennium Film Workshop later this month. The show, called “The Former New York,” focuses on the New York City of the seedy `80s. Many of the images depict the subway in a when graffiti was rampant and before cell phones, iPods and other devices occupied our attention.

The gallery’s website indicates that these photos were chosen to “depict a time that lives in limbo: they are too young to be the historical records of the fuzzy past, and way too old to resemble contemporary culture, now moving at warp speed.”

Sandler’s photos show a different side of the graffiti filled trains than those taken by Cooper, Chalfant and Naar. Rather than focusing on the graffiti itself, work is more about the environment it created and how people interacted within it.

The show will be open from April 30th through June 19th, with an opening reception and film screening on May 6th 6-8pm. All the details can be found here.