Chavez says that he began Subway Therapy as a way to “promote stress relief, [while] building community, inclusion, and peaceful expression.” Passersby are encouraged to take a sticky note and contribute their own thoughts to the wall.

As mundane a medium as it might seem, the multi-hued sticky notes have created quite a splash, and show how something so simple can become powerful in numbers.

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The notes range from optimistic to hostile:

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And others use humor to defuse the pain:

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When we visited the Union Square therapy wall, makeup artist Ish Peralta and model Emma Vega were conducting an interactive art installation of their own that asked straphangers to pen notes to be painted onto Vega’s body.

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The various sticky note walls throughout the city show no signs of slowing down, and prove that sometimes, the pen is mightier than tiny Twitter-trolling fingers.

Follow Subway Therapy’s Instagram feed here.

+ Subway Therapy

Photos: Yuka Yoneda for Inhabitat