5. The building’s mural was inspired by colorful graffiti and calligraphy
ONE: Union of the Senses is a mural by American artist José Parlá, which is displayed in the lobby of One World Trade Center. Completed and installed in 2015, the mural measures 90 feet wide, making it one of the largest paintings in New York City. Asher Edelman and his gallery, Edelman Arts, curated the art for the new building, deciding that all the art in the building should be abstract and reflect themes of unity. Parlá’s abstract mural was chosen for its diverse colors reminiscent of the diversity of New Yorkers, as well as its influences of graffiti and calligraphy.
Parlá was a former street artist from Miami who had previously painted murals at the Brooklyn Academy of Music and the Barclays Center. Parlá worked on the One World Trade Center mural over a period of eight months at his Brooklyn studio, considering the work the most physical piece he had ever done. One of the most prominent techniques for the artwork was his creation of long strokes created by putting his brush on the canvas, then dragging it down as he jumped off his ladder. He then worked on the active painting for two more weeks on-site.