This August, an art installation piece unlike any other will take to New York City’s Park Avenue Tunnel. Open to pedestrians for the very first time, from 33rd Street to 40th Street visitors will have access to walk beneath the city in an installation called “Voice Tunnel.”
“Voice Tunnel” is a vision brought to life by Mexican-Canadian artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, who plans to transform the 1,400-foot long Park Avenue Tunnel with more than 300 theatrical spotlights, producing glimmering arches along the walls and ceiling of the pedestrian path. This will be an interactive sound and light installation, allowing participants to influence the visual components of the tunnel by using their voices.
According to the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT),
“Participants will be able to influence the intensity of each light by speaking into a special intercom at the tunnel’s center that records their voice and loops it. Louder speech increases the lights’ brightness proportionally, creating Morse-like code of flashes throughout the tunnel. The individual voices can be heard as pedestrians walk through the tunnel, on 150 loudspeakers, one beside each light arch and synchronized with it.”
This interactive installation in the Park Avenue Tunnel is part of New York City DOT’s “Summer Streets” series, in which during three consecutive Saturdays this August, nearly seven miles of NYC’s streets will be closed to car and bus traffic, and will be open for residents to play, run, walk, and bike. Lots of fun activities like rock climbing walls, art walks, and live performances will take place on these designated Saturdays, allowing New Yorkers to flock to the traffic-free streets.
Be sure to visit “Voice Tunnel” as part of New York City’s “Summer Streets” days, this August 3rd, 10th, and 17th to experience the Park Avenue Tunnel like never before. For more information, visit New York City DOT’s Summer Streets activity page.