We’ve been following the Downtown ‘Mural Project‘ in and around the 2WTC and 3WTC construction lots, now surrounded by a number of gorgeous new murals. With the Oculus in the background, the large-scale mural project takes viewers from Vesey and Greenwich Streets, down Church and Dey Streets to Cortlandt Street.
It all started with a casual conversation between a gallery owner/artist rep and a chief marketing officer of a formidable new building. That was a few years & a lot of paint cans ago. The gallery owner ~ Doug Smith, World Trade Gallery ~ on the other side of the conversation, Dara McQuillan, 4 World Trade Center, Silverstein Properties.
And so the project began ~ Graffiti in the Sky would become a collaboration of sixty well-known street artists painting 34,000 square feet on the 69th floor of 4 World Trade Center, overlooking the 9/11 Memorial, that would eventually be leased to Spotify.
Fast-forward two years, with a new set of canvases from Silverstein Properties, now partnering with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, with some of the same artists. The site would be the large sheds surrounding the empty lot that will become Two World Trade Center ~ across from the Oculus, surrounded by Greenwich, Vesey and Church Streets. It is the site where the South Tower stood until September 11.
The artists for the Two World Trade Center Mural Project will cover the front of the large steel sheds with color and their signature work, bringing to this solemn site a message for a hopeful future, as tourists and fellow New Yorkers pause to watch them work.
The Brooklyn-based artist Stickymonger (Joohee Park) is known for her large black vinyl stickers in window installations, but for this project we found her on a lift surrounded by cans of paint recreating her signature wide-eyes young girl. She was one of the Graffiti in the Sky artists at 4 WTC.
Let’s take a walk around the Two World Trade Center Mural Project.
The above image, by @Stickymonger is one of the window murals in 3 World Trade Center, now under construction.
Tourists and locals have been in selfie-heaven. In the image above, by artist Ben Angotti aka @angotti81, you will notice a dancer filming herself ~ hula hoop in hand, with the colorful mural behind her.
#Hektad, below, brings love to two walls in the form of colorful hearts on one, and rows of the word ‘Love‘ on another. His signature “Love Drunk” is a perfect message to give to the four million people who will walk by his wall, while visiting the 9/11 Memorial this coming year.
A New York City graffiti pioneer, who began his artistic life at a young age painting trains in the 1980s, Hektad spread “Love” all over this City. Harts on the side of buildings, pop-up gallery shows, in parks, on gates, and even on strings! And a giant splattered heart in honor of the man who fell to earth, A Bowie lightning bolt at the 2nd Avenue F Stop. #Hektad
The artists chosen for this project will cover the front of the large steel sheds, and wide tarps, with their signature work, bringing to this solemn site a message for a hopeful future.
#BoogieRez = Riisa Boogie and Rezones
You will find BoogieRez across from The Oculus, next to the entrance to the World Trade Center Path Train.
The Boogie half of BoogieRez will tell you that her creatures are her energy ~ her ‘Optimistic Rebels’ filled with imagination, curiosity, emotions and ambition. She was also one of the Graffiti in the Sky artists at 4 WTC.
#ToddGrayLA ~ Los Angeles based artist Todd Gray, below, is known for his classic images of pop from the past, combining them with new and recognizable contemporary pop art ~ in cartoons, superheroes, hashtags, emojis.
Gray’s wall can be found on the corner of Greenwich Street, across from The Oculus, right next to BoogieRez, and is a stunning 65 foot by 25 foot pedestrian-stopper! POW! is an understatement.
Around the corner to Vesey Street, #Brolga + #ChinonMaria & Sebastian Mitre
#Brolga is an Australian-born, Brooklyn-based artist and illustrator known for his large-scale wheat pastes and murals like Muhammad Ali and Louis Armstrong. He was also one of the Graffiti in the Sky artists, painting at 4 WTC.
#ChinonMaria gave Vesey Street a grand, festive sign. Her mural sits on top of the colorful #Brolga mural, next to the Vesey Street entrance to the Path train.
While you’re Downtown, check out Chinòn Maria’s #MuralToUnite, a 200+ foot long, 2,400 square foot mural completed in the Fall of 2017 entitled One World Our Children at the World Trade Center Campus, commissioned by Downtown Alliance.
Next to Ben Angotti is Ian Ferguson aka @hydeon, above and below.
Above and below, @riiisaBoogie
Everyone’s Different…..by @frank_ape
New artwork, above and below, going up on the 3WTC building
From Church Street & Dey Street to Cortlandt Street, artwork below…..
Moving down Church Street
Church Street, ending at Cortlandt Street, below.
And as the artists have celebrated our City with their murals, there is a wall along a walkway next to 18 Church Street, that celebrates the artists who created what Larry Silverstein calls “A Masterpiece in the Sky” at 4 World Trade Center’s 69th Floor, a project curated by World Trade Gallery’s owner, Doug Smith.
In the end, what was suppose to be eight murals has grown to be a huge project, including the walkway of murals celebrating the artists of 4WTC. The Mural Project collaboration between Silverstein Properties, World Trade Gallery, and the artists is still in progress, and will be on view for approximately one year.
Silverstein Properties is not new to providing a canvas for artists. Larry Silverstein has long felt that art brings “vitality, excitement and dimension” to locations. “After 9/11 Silverstein invited artists to work in vacant spaces around the World Trade Center site.”
Take a look inside the landmarked 120 Broadway, aka The Equitable Building, a Silverstein property housing The Bankers Club and a third floor filled with murals.
While you’re there, visit the new home of The Sphere
St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine, now located at 130 Liberty Street was totally destroyed during 9/11, and after twenty years, will reopen its doors on November 2, 2021.
The complex, designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava and modeled after Byzantine churches of Hagia Sophia and the Church of the Holy Savior in Istanbul, was designed to glow in the evening hours, an ever-present beacon of hope on the World Trade Center campus.
St. Nicholas National Shrine officially commenced the 20th Anniversary Remembrance of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks with a Memorial Service and the Inaugural Lighting of the National Shrine.
As the sun set on September 10th, the rebuilt St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine illuminated from within for the first time. The guests in attendance each held a lit candle as a symbol of light overcoming darkness ~ honoring the lives lost and remembering the sacrifice of the heroes of 9/11.
Below is a rendering, courtesy of the architect, Santiago Calatrava.
Check out more images of the construction on St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church on New York Yimby.
St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine will serve as a place of prayer and silent reflection and also house a nondenominational bereavement center for anyone seeking solace and strength at a time of loss. Watch the live stream of the official opening on November 2, 2021.
Another project due for completion in time for the 20th anniversary of 9/11 is The Perelman Performing Arts Center. the performing arts center is one of the final pieces of the original World Trade Center Master Plan.