katharina grosse colorizes railway landscape for train riders katharina grosse colorizes railway landscape for train riders
may 15, 2014

katharina grosse colorizes railway landscape for train riders

katharina grosse colorizes railway landscape for train riders
all photos by steve weinik for the city of philadelphia mural arts program

 

 

 

berlin-based artist katharina grosse is transforming the landscape one of philadelphia’s major transportation routes with a series of seven, vibrantly-colored installations along the city’s rail gateway, visible primarily to passengers aboard passing trains. ‘psychylustro’ utilizes grosse’s unique spray-paint technique to spread intense color across the chosen project sites, unfolding throughout the dynamic course and covering abandoned warehouse walls, small buildings and stretches of green spaces in bold hues. framed through the windows of the moving train, the large-scale public artwork generates a real-time landscape painting that explores shifting scale, perspective and the passage of time.

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
a passenger aboard the train passes by the pink colored installation outdoors

 

 

 

grosse explains that her work ‘shifts your notion of size through movement, so when you stand in front of it, it’s huge, but when you pass it by on the train it becomes small. this kind of experience — that your life is constantly in that kind of changing mode — is something I’ve always been fascinated by. and this time we have an extra tool, which is the train. in a museum you walk, and that’s the way you move. here, you can fly.’

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
grosse’s team paint the landscape pink

 

 

 

presented by the city of philadelphia mural arts program, the ephemeral and constantly changing installation will transform over time and — with nearly 34,000 daily viewers on the railway — will be a portal for new audiences to experience contemporary art, transforming a routine train journey into a voyage of the imagination.we really want people to see what we see,’ describes jane golden, mural arts executive director. ‘we see the deterioration, but we also see the beauty, we see the history, we see philadelphia’s past.’ mural arts has now released a map of the project sites, available here.

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
painting site 3 (drama wall) with benjamin moore acrylic indoor paint

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
site 5 (trestle)

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
the artist at the drama wall

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
site 6 (warehouse)

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
warehouse painted in white and orange

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
vibrant hues wash the side of the building

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
the landscape is transformed by the bold use of color

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
the railway line site is painted in orange

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
site 7 (twin walls)

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
bright green details of site 7

train passengers katharina grosse railway installation psychylustro
‘twin walls’ covers the abandoned site in lime green

  • An artist pouring acrylic paint directly into an environment solely for the sake of art astonishes me. Albeit the second picture in the article would make a great photo for an organic food campaign.

    Joa says:
  • I love it. It’s an interesting way to spice up your morning commute. My concern is, will the bright pink colour affect the environment/wildlife around it?

    Hudson says:
  • I like it too although I cannot imagine what approval processes were involved to get it done. I would think that one would need the approval of the owners of the abandoned buildings and an environmental report for the painting of landscape. I was a bit taken back when I read that a standard indoor paint was employed to paint the landscape portion. I was expecting to read that a special paint, that broke down more easily, was used.

    Ron Smith says:
  • I’m pretty stunned and horrified by the ecological carelessness of this. I kept waiting for the disclaimer that the pigments are non-toxic, bio-degradable and earth friendly, but that never came. Benjamin Moore acrylic indoor paint? Really?

    William says:
  • Is this a joke? I find it hard to believe that a city that is trying to become the greenest city by 2015 would allow indoor acrylic paint sprayed on plants outside. The photos sure look like they could have easily been photoshopped/color swapped. It better not be real.

    I Beta says:
  • It is art and it is beautiful.

    Daniel Morris says:
  • As Sherman Williams says, “Cover the Earth”

    Keith says:
  • I find the idea behind this—of having people look twice, and even more times, at places that might have been ignored—really wonderful. It’s what drives a lot of our work as Urban Plant Research. But like the previous posters, I am dismayed that paints were used to cover living plants! Plants can’t photosynthesize or respire when coated with solid, opaque substances…

    Leslie / Urban Plant Research says:
  • The paint was tested and approved for use by the water department and the PA EPA equivalent.

    Steve says:
  • Most of the plantings near the train tracks are exotic invasive, am I going to miss Japanese Knotweed? or Tree of Heaven?.. no! Hooray to this project. and would be interesting this project evolves. You wanted attention.. you got it Philly!

    Albert says:

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