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NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK
       
     
NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK
       
     
NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK
       
     
NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK
       
     
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To see image full screen, click (+) in top right of photo. (MTA video)

MTA Arts for Transit commissions public art that is seen by hundreds of thousands of city-dwellers as well as national and international visitors who use the New York City Transit, Metro-North Railroad, Long Island Rail Road, and Bridges & Tunnels. As the MTA rehabilitates subway and commuter rail stations through its Capital Program, it uses a portion of the funds to install permanent works of art. Arts for Transit’s projects create links to neighborhoods with art that echoes the architectural history and design context of the individual stations. Both well-established and emerging artists add to a growing collection of works created in the materials of the system -mosaic, ceramic, tile, bronze, steel and glass. 

Image: MTA Commission at Philipse Manor Station
2010
Height: 42 inches (106 cm) each
Photo Credit: Veronica Sharon

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Artists are chosen through a competitive process that uses selection panels comprised of visual arts professionals and community representatives which review and select artists. Artists submitted samples through an Open Call for consideration for the Philipse Manor project. In September 2008, 8 finalist artist from over 500 applicants were chosen. These eight visited the station and had 2 months to create a design. The community and MTA group meet once again, and choose one design from New York glass artist Joseph Cavalieri. 

ABOUT THE DESIGN: Joseph Cavalieri has roots in the Tarrytown and Sleepy Hollow area. He was raised 20 miles east in Pleasantville, New York, and his parents Catherine and John Cavalieri, and grand parents lived in the Tarrytown area. He combined his personal knowledge of the community with resources found at The Historical Society in Tarry town.

Image: MTA Commission at Philipse Manor Station
2010
Height: 42 inches (106 cm) each
Photo Credit: Veronica Sharon

Production: Willet Hauser Architectural Glass, Inc.

(MTA video)

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Here is his description from the winning design:

“The tree is a classic representation of family and community. This tree is mature, flowering and extremely healthy. Like a tree, a community has a multitude of branches and roots bringing together people of different backgrounds and ages. This tree also relates to the Metro North route, traveling north and south. At the base of the tree trunk is an outline in the shape of Philipsburg Manor. The border is formed from dutch tile design, showing the Dutch history of the community, while the bottom semi circles represent autumnal rolling hills of Westchester. Philipse Manor is a very classy stop on Metro North. I like to call it “Versailles on the Hudson”. This design brings a sophisticated and polished look to the overpass and elegantly connects the station to the natural environment.”

He continues “My main concern was to make art that commuters would enjoy seeing everyday. A colorful design that would greet them in the morning and warmly welcome them home at night.”

Joseph’s inspiration for this design comes from historic dutch tiles, and the tradition of elaborate entrances of great train stations in Europe, especially the art nouveau design in the Paris subway. Yet, he adds an contemporary artisan feel with the uneven curvaceous wild branches. The tree shape comes from his imagination, the round blooms are an abstraction of geranium flowers, and the curvy branches intentionally look like Victorian gates, relating to Victorian homes in Westchester. The blue tree is placed over a gradient orange-yellow background, a beautiful color combination that creates a contrast to make this read easily from afar. 

Image: MTA Commission at Philipse Manor Station (detail)
2010
Height: 42 inches (106 cm) each
Photo Credit: Veronica Sharon

(MTA video)

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There are two magical elements in this design. First, when seen from a distance it becomes one complete tree with branches stretching widely across the overpass, a solid symbol of a connected community. Secondly, Joseph has written a haiku about the train whistle, which is printed on the branches. It is read from inside the overpass by the waiting commuters. The haiku is in the traditional 5/7/5 stanza and reads:

A gentle Hudson
whistle begins my journey
north, and south and home

Image: MTA Commission at Philipse Manor Station (detail)
2010
Height: 42 inches (106 cm) each

Photo Credit: Veronica Sharon

NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK
       
     
NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK

PRODUCTION: The MTA Arts for Transit department is an extremely organized group of people. Once the artist is chosen, an easy to follow scope of work schedule is given to the artist. Joseph choose/chose the manufacturer Willet Hauser Architectural Glass Inc. in Winona MN. A schedule was set, the design redrawn to exact measurements of the windows, and Willet Hauser started to create these designs to size (33 x 42 inches each panel). Faceted glass is about one inch thick and is cut by huge saws. Between the glass pieces is black epoxy, which expands and contracts in different temperatures. Since this panel is outdoors and just feet away from the Hudson river, it needs to withstand temperatures range from over 100 degrees to under freezing.  

Samples of colors were discussed and painting samples were created by Willet Hauser. Once these were approved a 18 x 18” section was created and sent to the MTA offices. This sample showed all the colors and painting styles that would be used on the full 6 panels. The next step was to start cutting the glass and painting the individual pieces. Cavalieri visited the manufacturer to paint sections of the glass himself.  

Image: MTA Commission at Philipse Manor Station (detail)
2010
Height: 42 inches (106 cm) each
Photo Credit: Veronica Sharon

NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK
       
     
NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK

WILLET HAUSER VISIT: Joseph arrived in Winona, MN, and drove directly to Willet Hauser to start painting during his two day visit. A couple of full size color copies of his design were laid out, with the inch-thick glass cut to size and set on top. The staff is extremely talented, they gave a tour and set up a light table for Cavalieri to paint the glass. Since Joseph is familiar with glass they put him to work to paint sections of the panel, something they normally don’t allow “Arts for Transit” artist. Joseph says, “The nice thing about this project is the professionals at Willet Hauser cut and painted most all of the inch thick glass. During my visit I approved the layouts and hand painted some of the glass. Once each piece of glass is kiln fired they poured black epoxy between the pieces. This permanently bonds the glass.” During Joseph’s visit to Winona he arranged a visiting artist lecture at Winona State University to art students about his magazine background, his glass business and this MTA glass project. 

Image: MTA Commission at Philipse 

Samples of colors were discussed and painting samples were created by Willet Hauser. Once these were approved a 18 x 18” section was created and sent to the MTA offices. This sample showed all the colors and painting styles that would be used on the full 6 panels. The next step was to start cutting the glass and painting the individual pieces. Cavalieri visited the manufacturer to paint sections of the glass himself.  

Image: MTA Commission at Philipse Manor Station (detail)
2010
Height: 42 inches (106 cm) each
Photo Credit: Veronica Sharon

NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK
       
     
NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK

INSTILLATION: When all 6 panels were complete they were driven to the Philipse Manor station in Westchester, New York.  September 2009, they were unloaded, and inspected for any breakage. They all arrived perfectly, and the next day were installed in the windows, with each panel lifted by two men and set into the windows. About three months, in December 2009, the overpass was opened to the public.

Image: MTA Commission at Philipse Manor Station (detail) 
2010
Height: 42 inches (106 cm) each
Photo Credit: Veronica Sharon

NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK
       
     
NORTH, SOUTH & HOME PHILIPSE MANOR STATION, NEW YORK

TRIBUTE: Since the start of this project Joseph realized the importance of a permanent instillation of this size. He sees it as a way of giving back to the community, and paying homage to his roots. He personally dedicates this to parents, Catherine and John Cavalieri.

Cavalieri says: “From the overpass you can see the Tappan Zee Bridge. My grandfather Stanislau Mosiello lived in Tarrytown and watched the bridge being built from the family’s kitchen window. My Uncle Toby would drive him down to the shore to watch the progress. Grandpa Mosiello was an avid walker and was excited for the day he would be able to walk the complete expanse of the bridge. The day before the bridge opened to the public in 1955, my grandfather passed away. Now grandparents, my father and many aunts and uncles are buried in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery. This is my personal homage to these relatives, a way of connecting their spirits to the Hudson, and a tribute for people living in this graceful community as they travel north, south and home.” 

Image: MTA Commission at Philipse Manor Station (detail)
2010
Height: 42 inches (106 cm) each
Photo Credit: Veronica Sharon