On October 7, at 6:30 p.m., the Transit Museum will be screening Jeremy Workman's award-winning documentary "One Track Mind," the story of Philip Ashforth Coppola's 30-year devotion to and obsession with "meticulously cataloging every subway station--and corresponding mosaic--in the New York City subway system."
You might remember Jeremy and Phil from an interview I did with them on this blog back in 2011. An excerpt:
Q: One of the people in the film says you are "possessed" by your study of the subway, that you have a "certain kind of mind." How would you characterize that kind of "one track" mind?
PC: What kind of "possessed" mind do I have? There's two of me, after a fashion. The everyday me goes to work, goes to church, does all the special occasion and holiday stuff, does the house chores, et al. Just like any of you. Then there's the me who has filled 36 notebooks with sketches & transcriptions, journeyed on field trips, drawn the illustrations, wrote the texts, and got it all published, and so on. Sometimes I don't know how I've done it. This endeavor has been my abiding passion for about half of my years lived so far. I'm possessed in that I know I must finish this.
JW: People are often blown away by Phil's level of commitment even before they've seen his book. Then, when people see the multiple volumes of Silver Connections (which can pile waist-high), their jaws invariably drop to the floor. I've never met a person with this level of commitment to one particular subject. He's been working on this study for over 30 years and is totally undeterred by anyone's else interest (or lack of interest) in his study. It's incredible.
At the screening, both men will be on hand to answer questions about "preservation, documentation, and the artistic idiosyncrasies of the City." In addition, Phil's original drawings will be on view. Don't miss this rare opportunity. Buy tickets here.