New York’s Underbelly

  • One of the projects I would undoubtably pay to see is the Underbelly Project, one of the greatest urban art operations undergone in the past years.

    Photo: Emile Souris

    The idea was born back in 2009 from two artists, Workhorse and Pac, who discovered a long time abandoned and incomplete subway station beneath the streets of New York and decided to turn it into one of the biggest unsolicited, unauthorized exhibition spaces in the United States. That is, more precisely, turning an underground station into an underground event.

    Photo: Ian Cox

    The mission lasted 18 months and involved about 100 contributors from the world’s street art panorama, either famous or not. In 2010, once the work got finished, they decided to celebrate in one night the opening and, at the same time, the closing of the space. With the presence of a journalist (Jasper Rees, The Sunday Times, look for his article here) they decided to guarantee themselves a witness of the unique event presenting this incredible amount of work — a huge exhibition space that probably no one else will ever see, except for a few subway workers.

    Why doing this whole operation to close everything the same day of the opening and keeping it almost unknown? Well, apparently they wanted to keep their art away from the market, scared by the many examples of street art deviation to commercial rules we see nowadays: they somehow created their own, uncontaminated world. A world which we’ll probably never see but, if time and humidity allow, will stay somewhere there under New York. The webpage of the project is still under construction but we hope some more images will come up soon to the public. In the meanwhile, check out this link.