Curious curbside haikus make their debut


The Department of Transportation thinks a little poetry could go a long way in making New York City streets safer.

Twelve signs featuring artwork and haikus by artist John Morse will be installed at a dozen high-crash locations across the boroughs for the new “Curbside Haiku” safety campaign that was announced yesterday.

Paid for by a state grant and installed through DOT’s Urban Art Program, the artwork and poetry will appear on light poles and at public parking lots around the city until next fall.

Each sign focuses on one transportation mode, like bike riding or driving, in order to make New Yorkers more sensitive to their whereabouts.

“Curbside Haiku seeks to merge public art with public awareness to infuse a bit of beauty and joy into the public sphere,” said John Morse. “I’m aiming to engage, edify and inform — and nothing does that better than art.”

In the next week and a half, 216 of the signs will decorate the city’s intersections. Two of the haikus are in Spanish.

Spot the signs

The haiku signs will be up at the following areas:
1. Bronx Zoo/New York Botanic Garden, Bronx
2. Grand Concourse/Bronx Museum, Bronx 
3. The Hub, Bronx
4. Studio Museum/Central Harlem
5. Municipal Arts Society/Museum of Art and Design
6. MoMA/International Center of Photography
7. Flushing, Queens
8. PS 1, Queens
9. Jamaica, Queens
10. Downtown Brooklyn
11. Brooklyn Museum/Brooklyn Botanical Garden
12. St. George, Staten Island


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