Back in the ’70s and ’80s graffiti art thrived in New York City, especially on subway trains. All of that changed in the ’90s and today it’s extremely rare to see a moving subway train with graffiti on it. It just doesn’t happen mainly because artists would risk getting arrested if caught spray painting a train. But things might be changing, and it’s so refreshing to see.
A working Q train on 96th Street station in New York City was covered in brilliant graffiti art.
The images went viral on social media earlier this week because you just don’t see this kind of art display anymore. The New York Post spoke to an MTA official, and they said the artist probably painted the train while it was parked in the station overnight. We could have sworn all MTA subway stations had surveillance cameras everywhere. We suppose the artist is extra slick.
The artist has not come forward to claim their work.
They’d probably be arrested if they did.
“If they can go back there and have the time to do all of that graffiti, they have time to do something to the train,” Train conductor Tramell Thompson, a transit activist who runs the Progressive Action Facebook page said to the Post. “It’s obvious they have no security back there.”
If artists know that no one is watching the trains overnight, we may have another resurgence of subway graffiti art on our hands once again.
However, what may look cool to some commuters doesn’t sit well with local lawmakers. According to The City, in 2018, New York City Transit spent $610,956 to clean graffiti, which they say was “an increase of 364% from the $131,539 spent just two years earlier.”
Here’s how some people are taking the news about new subway graffiti art.
It’s beautiful artwork.
The artist must know this area is not monitored by security.
Some say that the job had to be completed by more than one person so it could get done fast.
When you’re working on a time constraint, the adrenaline gets you moving fast.
They are master craftsman.
The more exposure it gets, the more people will get inspired.
Frida Kahlo is the most recognizable Mexican painter of the past century. That bold brow, traditional Mexican garb and piercing stare are undeniably Frida in a way that makes her completely unique among other artists. She’s also one of the most widely portrayed Mexican figures of all time. Her image adorns everything from tee-shirts and jewelry to murals and makeup. Her image is so recognizable that flower crowns, red lipstick, and ungroomed eyebrows will forever have an association with the artist.
To add to the Frida imagery in our world, a new mural featuring the famous artista has just been unveiled in Mexico and she has never looked better.
Painted by Irish artist Fin DAC, the mural portrays Frida Kahlo in bold primary colors and traditional Mexican dress.
Twitter / @la_linea
The artwork is named “Magdalena” and is located in Guadalajara — the capital of Jalisco. In the mural, Frida is represented with a full-body image, hands placed together in front of her as if in prayer. Vibrant flowers and butterflies adorn her like a crown in true Frida fashion.
She wears a huipil (a multicolored blouse traditionally found in southern Mexico), a pink shawl and a long blue skirt accentuated with various-sized skulls. The ten-story mural also depicts the artist with a blue mask across her eyes. This is artist Fin DAC’s signature that he adds to all of his pieces and works to enhance the dark stare that Frida gives viewers.
The artist responsible for this mural has lots of experience creating urban art in Latin America.
Twitter / @BrasilEFE
Between 2012 and 2017, Fin DAC visited Latin America several times. He created six murals total in Colombia and Brazil during that time. This is his first time creating art in Mexico. The artistic is known for his style — called “Urban Aesthetics” — and has made art on the streets of five different continents. His images also include women dressed in the native costume of their countries and are finished with his signature mask.
The artist explained the reasoning for his attention to national traditions to Mexanist. He said:
“No matter the culture and nationality for me, I am more interested in the type of clothing typical of each place, each country and each place has something to offer and show in this sense.”
For Fin DAC, the choice to depict Frida on this wall was an easy one. The artist explained that her own artwork always sought to exalt the women it depicted — much like his own. Frida’s own famous way of dressing always incorporated traditional Mexican costuming too so the decision to paint the famous Mexican for this piece was “almost obvious” to the painter.
The artist was invited to create this mural as part of celebrations for the Despertares Impulsa dance festival.
Instagram / @findac
Created by famous Mexican dancer, Isaac Hernández, the Despertares Impulsa dance festival began as a way to gather and stimulate the creative industry in Mexico. With the backing of the Mexican National Institute of Fine Arts, the event offers performances, workshops, lectures, master classes and meet and greets. The festival also offers opportunities for free auditions to different international dance companies.
Fin DAC was invited to create this piece by the director of Despertares Impulsa. The image was painted on a wall facing Chapultepec Avenue — a busy street that receives lots of traffic in the urban area. Fin DAC choose this location purposefully for this reason.
“When you see a spectacular advertising pole,” he said, “You see an image trying to sell you something you don’t need, but it makes you feel like you want it. (On the other hand) when you see a piece of art on the street it brings you a moment of happiness and peace, nothing from the advertising you see will make you happy, but art can definitely do it.
The mural was officially unveiled on July 15th, 2019 as part of the festival’s celebrations.
Twitter / @findac
The unveiling comes at a time of year significant to Frida fans. July 6th was the 112th anniversary of the artist’s birth. The 65th anniversary of her passing also happened this past month on the 13th of July. As such, this beautiful mural is an appropriate gift to honor the late Mexican artist.
Jennifer Lopez’s “It’s My Party” Tour was set to reach its pinnacle as the Puerto Rican icon returned to her home barrio, New York City, on Saturday, July 13. Instead, the sold out Madison Square Garden show was evacuated after a city-wide blackout turned Madison Square Garden (MSG) dark.
While StubHub reportedly refunded $500k to customers affected by the blackout, along with other suffering businesses, J.Lo was quick to action because her party ain’t over till she says it is.
When the lights went off, fans turned on their phone lights to light up the arena.
Credit: @jlo / Twitter
In video footage posted by J.Lo on her social media accounts, you can see the 49-year-old knockout performing for her loudest, most loyal fans when everything went black. Fans started to scream, and although J.Lo’s microphone cut out, she starts to tell the crowd, “Don’t panic. Everybody, stay calm.”
The singer quickly took to social media to blast her thoughts out to her fans.
Credit: @jlo / Twitter
Since nobody could hear her, she brilliantly sent a message through to everyone with a selfie video. “Hi guys, we’re backstage. They just told me to get off stage… They’re asking everyone to evacuate very slowly and calmly and that’s what we’re going to have to do,” she tells the camera. She tweeted out to her fans, “Heartbroken to say tonight’s show is cancelled. We will reschedule. Love you all!!! Stay safe! #ItsMyPartyTour”
Some thought her fire caused the NYC blackout.
Credit: @jlo / Twitter
In a video she posted to Twitter, we hear someone telling Jennifer, “New York just wasn’t ready for you.” J.Lo agreed.
J.Lo posted several more videos that night expressing to her fans how “heartbroken” she was to have to cancel the show.
Credit: @jlo / Twitter
“Devastated and heartbroken that I can’t perform for all of you tonight. We will make this up to you, I promise!” she tweeted alongside the video. And that she did. :’ )
Later, she shared a video of her finding out the show could be rescheduled for the upcoming Monday.
Credit: @jlo / Twitter
“UGHHHH, this sucks. This SUCKS, she frustratingly shouted into a phone.” We see her with fiancé Alex Rodriguez and her team in a business meeting where the person on the other end of the phone confirmed that MSG could reschedule her concert for Monday.
J.Lo made sure to bring the whole Madison Square Garden to its feet during rescheduled concert.
Way to go, J.Lo. That’s how you deliver a show to your fans.
Of course, A-Rod was there with all of the support.
Credit: @AROD / Twitter
Alex Rodriguez is the attentive and supportive partner everyone deserves. He seems to always be there for her performances and his unyielding support of her is something we can all cry over.
Even though she’s going to perform in a different city the very next day, she’s making The Garden show round two happen the night before.
Credit: @MySimple_Life / Twitter
“I just want to let you guys know that you’re going to get your money’s worth, that we are going to come back and do an amazing show for you. I am so sorry that this happened. Obviously, it was all beyond our control,” she told fans just hours before following through on her promise.
This morning, she tweeted “The party’s not over til I say it is…. See you tonight, NYC!!!!!!!!”
Credit: @momdcpac / Twitter
You can’t stop a Puerto Rican fire. ; ) J.Lo’s swift action and obvious disappointment for her fans has just reinvigorated her fanbase.
Meanwhile, around the city, Latinos were taking in the city sin luz.
Credit: @Joseph_Mora78 / Twitter
As the sun set on the city, it’s usually bright cityscape was absolutely pitch dark. Citizens started directing traffic, including directing police cars in the right direction. A Symphony Hall orchestra moved their performance to the middle of a busy New York street, making it open to the public.
Bodegas kept doing their thing.
Credit: @AliBaumanTv / Twitter
The metaphorical and literal cornerstone of NYC and Latino culture remained the hub for socializing and snacking.
Broadway just took their performances to the street.
Credit: @Hadestown / Twitter
Lin-Manuel Miranda tweeted an incredible video of André and company freestyling about the blackout, during the blackout, to keep the Hadestown performance alive.
Kulture still had a “lit” 1st birthday party during the blackout.
Credit: @iamcardib / Instagram
In an Instagram live video posted Sunday, Cardi B told her fans that her baby’s first birthday party “was so lit that I lost my motherf–king nail. Let me tell ya’ll something, ya’ll made it lit was the fact that I had got there, the lights went off in the party, it was like a whole hour with no lights, no music. But it was…lit!”
Here’s what we learned. A blackout may turn off the power in the City of Lights, but it can’t stop culture from doing its thing.