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November 8, 2011

Rogues Gallery: The AIANY (“American Institute of Architects New York”) Subway Corridor Posters Under the IFC Center Showing “Urbanized”

Noticing New York

Michael D.D. White notices something familiar on a subway advert, and offers a remedy.

On our way to catch and write about “Urbanized,” the new Gary Hustwit documentary about urban design we discovered, heading up from the A Train, that the subway corridor directly under the IFC Center theater hosting the film is lined with AIANY (“American Institute of Architects New York”) posters featuring different architectural projects. Some of those images are of Hall of Shame subsidy grabbers, and for sure at least the pictures of the of the net-public-loss Atlantic Yards Prokhorov/Ratner (“Barclays”) basketball arena are destined to be disgruntling.

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The subway images promoting the Prokhorov/Ratner arena and these other government assisted, government subsidized projects is also part of something else that has been a Noticing New York preoccupation recently: The pummeling we are getting everywhere we go reflecting a severe imbalance in the public dialogue delivered via paid speech. Big picture, the skewing of wealth in this country is working in conjunction with the increasing privatization of the traditional avenues and elements of public speech (including but not limited to public spaces and streets in which to speak). That means that we are forever being subjected to ubiquitous, insistent cues and reinforcements of (for example) the way Forest City Ratner wants things perceived.

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Posted by eric at November 8, 2011 9:58 AM