A subway art mystery at Spring Street

Walk into the Spring Street subway entrance on the C and E line, and you’re greeted by this large, lively mosaic of a multi-track, two-story stop.

It’s titled New York Subway Station, by Edith Kramer.

Except the mosaic doesn’t depict the Spring Street station—it’s a view of Union Square.

Why it’s at Spring Street is a mystery, but in any case, it’s a colorful and enchanting piece of art, and it’s been at the entrance since 1994.

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8 Responses to “A subway art mystery at Spring Street”

  1. rocco dormarunno(akafivepointsguy) Says:

    Why is this mosaic here? Good question. I’m sure the answer is mundane, like financing or MTA mismanagement. But I’ll take some stabs.
    Edith Kramer spent much of her time living and working in SoHo. She was affiliated with the Little Red School House on Bleecker. She was responsible for the success of Art Therapy programs at NYU in the 1970s. All these places are (or, in NYU’s case, were) south of Union Square. So her roots are really in the SoHo neighborhood. But like I said, the real reason is probably something banal.

  2. wildnewyork Says:

    Well that makes sense; thanks Rocco. I like the mosaic a lot and it looks much more enchanting in person.

  3. rocco dormarunno(akafivepointsguy) Says:

    Yes, much more enchanting!

  4. cynthia Says:

    for a while, years back, the mosaic was at the Atlantic Ave Station in Brooklyn. Its beautiful. I wondered where it went. Anyone who rides the subway, could tell immediately which station it was.

  5. nyc. manhattan. art underground. | big cities. bright lights. Says:

    […] this mosaic by edith kramer titled “new york subway station” shows the union square station – despite its location at the entrance for the A and C trains at spring street. source […]

  6. SoudsOfDowntown Says:

    Above that mosaic another piece of art has appeared above the entrance. It is a greenish metal plaque and it rather good but no mention of the artist.

  7. Anthony Says:

    She took a year to do that mosaic, the whole studio reeked of stone dust. Originally the piece was in Brooklyn. But the TA moved it, perhaps because she requested that space. Somebody said it got tagged, and hopefully it has been cleaned as per my request to the Transit folks. Not so easy to do from CO.
    Prof Kramer trudged through that station all the time even into her 80’s, she ride the subway uptown and she painted the triangle park on Houston all the time. She frequently used Spring Street to walk home to her 5 flr walk-up on the Bowery fr. her painting loft studio on Van Dam and Hudson, because the ‘Wise Guys’ always kept it safe to walk at any hr…….
    Now she’s passed at 98. She was quite a character.

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