New York-to-Dublin ‘Portal’ reopens with limited hours following x-rated antics

Man taking photo of The Portal in New York
The NYC to Dublin “Portal” has reopened at Madison Square after a temporary sabbatical.
AP Photo/Seth Wenig

Keep your shirt on; The Portal is open for business again.

The art installation connecting New York City and Dublin via livestream reopened on both sides of the Atlantic, but is now behind fencing and operating only under set hours in a bid to prevent New Yorkers and Dubliners from displaying the depraved depths of humanity.

The Portal’s livestream turned back on at 9 a.m. New York time on Sunday, the Flatiron-NoMad Partnership said. The installation is now behind metal fencing and will only stream between 6 a.m. and 4 p.m. New York time, and 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Dublin time.

“Come by and wave hi to folks from across the pond,” the Flatiron-NoMad Partnership said on Instagram.

The Portal, a project of Lithuanian artist Benediktas Gylys, opened on May 8 and sits at 23rd Street, Broadway, and 5th Avenue in Manhattan, near the Flatiron Building and Madison Square Park, while in Dublin it is perched on the Irish capital’s main commercial thoroughfare, O’Connell Street.

Gylys and officials in New York and Dublin pitched the Portal as a way for residents in different parts of the world to connect and bond. Ya-Ting Liu, New York’s Chief Public Realm Officer, said the Portal provides “a new point for human connection between New Yorkers and Dubliners,” while Dublin Lord Mayor Daithí de Róiste said it showcases the “deep historical and cultural bond” between the two cities.

The Portal’s hours are now limited and the installation is behind metal fencing to prevent mischief.AP Photo/Seth Wenig

But things quickly went awry as mischievous participants on both sides of the pond took the opportunity to showcase their city’s wild side.

In New York, an OnlyFans model walked up to the camera and flashed her breasts to the Irish crowd, while in Dublin someone approached the Portal and displayed a picture of the World Trade Center towers burning on 9/11.

On May 15, officials in both cities opted to temporarily turn off the livestream, citing the “very small minority” of individuals engaging in “inappropriate behavior.”

Initially, officials hoped to blur part of the video when someone did something inappropriate, but the New York Times reported that proved “not satisfactory.”

The Portal will now have security on-site continuously, and remains behind metal fencing for its daytime hours.

The truncated livestream is still set to remain through the fall. Another set of Portals connects Vilnius, Lithuania with Lublin, Poland, and Gylys plans to erect more in other cities.