“Subway Stories” is a new art project created by two young artists who themselves know too well the love-hate relationship commuters have with their journeys on the subway.
Digital artist and animation director, Alon Chitayat, commutes from Brooklyn to Manhattan on the C train every day and sketches his subjects, “never knowing how much time is left till they get off the train.”
Jeff Ong is a master’s candidate at NYU’s ITP and has a passion for creative coding and immersive storytelling, which is why he joined the “Subway Stories” project.
The work itself features a control box where visitors can choose to focus on different illustrated passengers and gain a fictional insight into their thoughts and life stories.
One handle controls the train’s speed, and the other handle controls the camera zoom. The artists describe the subway as, “Like a horizontal elevator, passengers anxiously wait for their stop, acutely aware of their temporary neighbours.”
The interactive installation’s aim is to create a sense of intimacy on the subway and encourage people to converse with each other as opposed to it being a place where people normally tend to avoid eye contact and personal interaction at all costs.
“Our hope is to create an intimate experience between the user and the subway, but more importantly between passengers — bridging the gap between the isolating experience of public spaces with the power of stories and reconsidering those ones immediately around us,” say Citayat and Ong.
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