It’s Times Square art with heart for New York City’s immigrants.
A new work, “We Were Strangers Once Too,” is located on the south side of Father Duffy Square and features a count of foreign-born New Yorkers inscribed on 33 metal poles.
The poles, which are highlighted by country, form a heart when seen head-on.
Jer Thorp of the Office for Creative Research, the Brooklyn-based art studio that was chosen to create the installation, said he and his team wanted to emphasize the positive impact that the city’s 3 million immigrants have on New York just in time for Valentine’s Day. “It’s really what defines New York City is and it so seemed really obvious for us what we wanted to do in this climate,” he said.
Thorp said they collected the data from the 2015 American Census Survey and the nations with the most city residents took up more space on the pole.
Thorp, a Canadian immigrant himself, said he hopes the installation, which will remain at the spot until March 5, will counter the negative hateful rhetoric that has been going on since the election.