New mural adorns Grand Concourse subway station

Stairwell 8
The new mural in the stairwell of the 138th Street Grand Concourse station.
Photos Argenis Apolinario

MTA Arts and Design has unveiled Day Into Night Into Day, a new mosaic artwork by artist Amy Pryor at the 138 Street Grand Concourse station in the Bronx.

Prominently featured on the downtown stair landing wall between the mezzanine entrance and the southbound platform, a 10-foot by 10-foot mosaic welcomes commuters into the station. Four additional murals are located on the station’s platforms. 

“In many ways, Day Into Night Into Day parallels the daily journeys taken by travelers through the station to and from the Mott Haven neighborhood,” Sarah Bloodworth, director of MTA Arts and Design said. “Amy’s rendering of the rising and setting of the sun highlights the cosmic energy involved in determining the length of our days and nights. The sparkling surfaces of the mosaics bring a contemplative spirit into the station, reminding us that while the evening brings our day to a close, every morning provides us with a fresh start. The artwork captures our imagination and adds a burst of energy and a wave of tranquility to the beginning and conclusion of our travels.”  

The series of mural-sized artworks depict the shifting hours of daylight and darkness over four seasons. Based on a 24-hour clock and reminiscent of pie charts, these works keep pace with the round-the-clock commuter. Seasonal sunrises, sunsets, night and daylight hours are rendered in a spectrum of associated colors. In addition, these prismatic markers of time are overlaid with charts of the stars that are only rarely visible in the Bronx. 

“The ten-foot square mosaic on the wall of the stairwell landing is divided into quadrants,” Pryor said. “The top left depicts the longest night of the year, the winter solstice. The top right represents the first day of spring, the vernal equinox, nearly equal hours of daylight and darkness. The lower left is the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. The lower right is the autumnal equinox, the first day of fall.  The four circular mosaics on the subway platforms also represent the winter solstice, vernal equinox,  summer solstice, and autumnal equinox.” 

Pryor worked with fabricator Mayer of Munich who translated the original artwork and fabricated it into mosaic murals. The artwork design included various geometric shapes and details that made the fabrication a challenge. The small stars and mosaic background were specially cut to match up exactly and the patterns were carefully aligned during installation.

The winter solstice on the wall.

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