Four photographs of Rays of Sunlight in Grand Central, Grand Central Terminal, 1903-1913, 1920, 1926, 1928, 1929, 1934, 1937, 1940, 1930-1940, 1935-1941, 1947, or 2010, by John Collier, Philip Gendreau Herbert, Edward Hulton, Kurt Hulton, Edward Lunch, Maxi, Hal Morey, Henry Silberman, Warren and Wetmore Trowbridge, Underwood & Underwood, Unknown, or Anonymous (Courtesy: Associated Press, the author, Bettmann/Corbis, Hal Morey / Getty Images, Getty Images, Hulton Collection, Hulton-Getty, Hutton Collection, New York City Municipal Archives, New York Transit Museum, New York City Parks and Landmarks, Royal Geographical Society, SuperStock/Corbis, Underwood & Underwood, Warren and Wetmore, or Image in Public Domain), 2013 - 2016

Four Photographs of Rays of Sunlight in Grand Central Station…, 2013-2016, began as an MTA commission for the Grand Central Centennial Celebration in 2013. For that project, I collected hundreds of images I found online of the iconic black and white photograph of sunrays streaming through windows at Grand Central Station. I found four distinct versions of these photographs, repeated variously over multiple websites selling them as posters or vintage prints: some had been treated with different color filters, some were cropped and recomposed, and most had the sellers’ “watermark” across them protecting a right of reproduction for an image which is actually in the public domain. For each of these images I attempted to find an attribution, which, on these sites, was as various as the aesthetic treatments the images had been subjected to. I included these in the title.

Thinking about the history of photography in relation to digital imaging technologies and the screen, I dissolved the images together into a video to re-animate these rays of light and create a fictive time lapse. The resulting video, Time Lapse: Four Photographs of Rays of Sunlight in Grand Central Station, 2016, presents the persistence of solar time (sun rays) colliding with standardized rail time (Grand Central Terminal), and now atemporal internet time: the sun insists on its continued presence as timekeeper, making Grand Central into a kind of eternal sundial created by the regenerated light of a digital projector and the timelessness of multiple online images that change with each digital iteration.

 


 
Time Lapse: Four photographs of Rays of Sunlight in Grand Central, Grand Central Terminal, 1903-1913, 1920, 1926, 1928, 1929, 1934, 1937, 1940, 1930-1940, 1935-1941, 1947, or 2010, by John Collier, Philip Gendreau Herbert, Edward Hulton, Kurt Hulton, Edward Lunch, Maxi, Hal Morey, Henry Silberman, Warren and Wetmore Trowbridge, Underwood & Underwood, Unknown, or Anonymous (Courtesy: Associated Press, the author, Bettmann/Corbis, Hal Morey / Getty Images, Getty Images, Hulton Collection, Hulton-Getty, Hutton Collection, New York City Municipal Archives, New York Transit Museum, New York City Parks and Landmarks, Royal Geographical Society, SuperStock/Corbis, Underwood & Underwood, Warren and Wetmore, or Image in Public Domain), 2013-2016
1:10 min excerpt from 6:29 min
Looped video
 
 

Installation of Time Lapse Four photographs of Rays of Sunlight in Grand Central.. at Bruce Silvertein Gallery, 2016
 
 
 

Grand Central Picasso, 2013–2016
Ink on canvas by Kinkos
20 × 30 in 

 
 
 
Installation, Grand Central Terminal, NY, 2016
 
 
 

Installation, Grand Central Terminal, NY, 2016

 
 

Installation, Grand Central Terminal, NY, 2016

 
 

Installation, Grand Central Terminal, NY, 2016