S. Nicole Lane
Updated Jan 02, 2017 @ 11:17 am
Opening Day Of The New Second Avenue Subway
Credit: Bloomberg/Getty Images

Manhattan’s Second Avenue subway line, which has been on delay for decades, finally opened on January 1st with the city’s first permanent LGBTQ artwork on display. The line, according to The New York Times, is the “most ambitious expansion of New York City’s subway system in a half-century” and includes a mosaic created by Vik Muniz. The piece entitled “Perfect Strangers” is based off of photographs of real New York commuters, and among the subjects are the married couple, Thor Stockman and Patrick Kellog.

Vik Muniz was born in Brazil but currently splits his time between New York City and Rio de Janerio where he works with photography and sculpture. Muniz’s commissioned piece for the station included inviting strangers over to a studio to be photographed as a reference for the final piece.

The couple, who are depicted as holding hands, was surprised to find that they had been featured on the walls of the station. Kellog explained to BuzzFeed that they “assumed they were taking photographs of thousands of average New Yorkers.” Kellog, a computer programmer, said:

He goes on to say that they were meant to appear like, “average New Yorkers.”

However, the couple does have some words of criticism for the visual artists of New York City, saying that they wished that, “There should be more art in New York featuring people of color. More representations of gender. I don’t think Thor and I are supposed to represent the entirety of the gay community in New York City — there is no way we could.”

With their plain clothes, overalls and a baseball cap, the duo proudly represents the first gay couple to be featured on the walls of the newest subway line.