On my way to sing at an open mic night at Ashford & Simpson’s club Sugar Bar, one Thursday evening, I came above ground and saw an amazing sight of an artist drawing with sharpie pens over a “canvas” of a simple paper city subway map. I couldn’t help but smile and stop to talk to the artist called The Subway Artist Of NYC, Enrico Miguel Thomas.
His soft-spoken demeanor and total enthusiasm for his work while creating under the very dim light of the small Verdi Square Park at the triangle of 72nd and Broadway captivated me. We had a great chat about the importance of art in public spaces. As a subway musician, I can relate to the affect that having art and music in public places has on a city and society. As artists thrive and create, so does the city. I gave him my CD as a tip, (which incidentally the cover art is by Lotte Hansen, another street artist I met on the street in Soho) and only wish I had enough cash to buy one of his amazing works of art.
He’ll be showcasing his work this coming May 1st and 2nd in his work space at Screwball Spaces, 183 Lorraine St in Gowanus, Brooklyn. I made a youtube clip where Enrico actually say's "maybe I could draw you performing" I'd love it. He also describes how to get to his show!
NY Times, City Room article by COREY KILGANNON April 22, 2010
Another article and video interview from West Side Independent By Avi
Quote from Avi’s interview with Enrico:
Enrico: “A lot of things about art can be used for a metaphor, for life... like the paper ripping, I'll just pull out a new piece and start over, that's the same thing with life, when things happen to you, you can't give up, have to keep going. There's things in life that rip us apart, but we have to pull out a new version of ourselves and present that to the world and keep moving, keep going..”
on 2010-05-03 13:04 by NYC Subway Girl
Mayor Bloomberg's new vendor regulations will limit the number of street vendors selling art. What about artists like Enrico or others who want to express their art by creating in public spaces? Okay do we need another John Lennon t-shirt, or a 911 picture of the towers burning?
But we do need to differentiate between artists creating their own work and the work of a street vendor setting up shop with trinkets and touristy fast-food like fare.