Image of a Daisy with the words

Ruben Natal-San Miguel, Untitled (Balloons), Coney Island, NYC, 2015
Interpretation by FAM Docent Cindy Tonrey 

Colorful Balloons fill the bottom half of the photo and amusement park fills the top. It is Untitled (Balloons), 2015, Ruben Natal-San Miguel

Ruben Natal-San Miguel, Untitled (Balloons), Coney Island, Brooklyn, NYC, 2015, Kodak Endura metallic chromogenic print, 26” x 38”. Gift of Dr. Anthony Terrana.

Ruben Natal-San Miguel was born in Puerto Rico, but has lived in Harlem for the last 20 years. He works as an architect, curator, writer, art collector and fine art photographer.  After the trauma of September 11, 2001, he took up photography.  As he says, “When you experience something like that, you have to find something that will be your therapy.” (from an interview with Susan Stamberg on NPR, January 28, 2021) For him, photography is a way of connecting to people and to the culture of New York, and he travels around the city looking for pictures. Natal-San Miguel photographs people where he finds them – in their own environment, going about their daily lives. His images celebrate his subjects’ individuality and convey a sense of respect, hopefulness and joy.

Although most of the photographs by Natal-San Miguel in this exhibit are of people, the photograph interpreted by the floral designer here is of an iconic place in New York City: Coney Island. The bright colors, the shapes, and the rides in the background all convey happiness, fun and joy. We can just imagine the balloons bouncing all around and the thrill of riding that rollercoaster which looks huge, even from a distance.  



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