MTA Press Releases

Press Release
April 29, 2019
IMMEDIATE
MTA Arts & Design Celebrates National Poetry Month with First Interactive Guide for Poetry in Motion Program
Downloadable Guide Offers Poems, Poets and Artwork at Riders’ Fingertips

MTA Arts & Design is celebrating April as National Poetry Month by launching a user-friendly interactive guide for Poetry in Motion, providing Metropolitan Transportation Authority riders with a handy way to view a comprehensive collection of poems in the program and learn about the poets and artists behind the poetry cards they see in New York City Transit subways and buses. 

“Poetry is celebrated every day in New York and launching this new guide brings the intimate experience of discovering a poem to any and everyone around the world through a quick download, while giving our riders a way to rediscover more recent poems,” said Sandra Bloodworth, Director of MTA Arts & Design. "Poetry touches all of us in deeply personal ways and has the ability to change our mood and our outlook in the time it takes to read a few lines." 

The popular Poetry in Motion program, beloved by riders since it began more than 25 years ago, provides a moment of respite or a spark of inspiration during subway and bus commutes. The program is a partnership between MTA Arts & Design and the Poetry Society of America, which work together to choose poems and display them on posters in subway cars and buses. Each poem is paired with an image from a permanent station artwork commissioned by MTA Arts & Design. The new guide compiles together every Poetry in Motion poem since 2012, when Poetry in Motion was permanently added to MTA Arts & Design’s arts programming. The guide displays the poems as they appeared on the poster, provides information on the poet and the artist, and features audio clips of select poems read by the poets themselves. 

“What a treat to see the art from which parts have been drawn for our enduring and ever-popular Poetry in Motion posters,” said Alice Quinn, Executive Director of the Poetry Society of America. “This new feature provides a visual tour of the great gallery of art commissioned by this talented team at MTA Arts & Design over the many years. Bravo to all for making this accessible to so many and for enriching our lives with this poetry guide.”

The interactive guide was produced by MTA staff and is available to view or download as a PDF on the MTA Arts & Design website through the “POETRY” tab. Once downloaded, the guide can be viewed offline on a smartphone or tablet, though Internet access is required for web links to the MTA TripPlanner, permanent station artwork pages and audio files.

Sample poem from guide:

MTA Arts & Design Launches Poetry in Motion Guide

About MTA Arts & Design
MTA Arts & Design encourages the use of mass transit in the metropolitan New York area by providing visual and performing arts in the transit environment. Its permanent Percent for Art program is one of the world’s largest and most diverse collections of site-specific public art in transportation, with over 300 site-specific commissions by world-famous, mid-career and emerging artists. Arts & Design produces photography installations, digital art, graphic arts and live musical performances in stations, and the Poetry in Motion program in collaboration with the Poetry Society of America. It serves more than 8 million people who ride MTA subways and commuter trains daily and strives to create meaningful connections between sites, neighborhoods, and people. For more information, please visit mta.info/art.

 

About the Poetry Society of America
The Poetry Society of America, the nation’s oldest poetry organization, was founded in 1910. Its mission is to build a larger and more diverse audience for poetry, to encourage a deeper appreciation of the vitality and breadth of poetry in the cultural conversation, and to place poetry at the crossroads of American life.  For more information, please visit www.poetrysociety.org.