The Writings on the Walls

I am fascinated with every aspect of a city. The fabric of a city, its many complex layers and patterns tell colorful and sometimes dark stories that deeply interest me. The city for me is my sanctuary for meditation, and because mediation is an internal personal practice, I rely on external factors like my camera and the city itself to reflect on my days, weeks, years and lifetime. I aimlessly wander the streets and alleys of Boston in search of mental clarity. As the visual person that I am, I cannot help myself but notice everything that surrounds me, in particular the writings on the walls.

I love graffiti for what it has to say. I am not endorsing nor promoting it through this post, but I do think that graffiti and street art have a place in a city in spite of their very short life. I love the psychological, social and political implications behind the writings on the walls in the streets and alleys of a city.

Below are some of my findings.

 

Mirror, Mirror...

Elvis?

I would, but you missed the

Femme Fatale

Agreed.

Oh, the smells...

Grrrr.

Yes, shame on you.

Golden showers are not cool.

The King/Queen of Hearts

Not RARE.

Dreams Are Not Cancelled

Dreams Are Not Cancelled...Dreams AR Trus. Spelling anyone?

This person loves

Lisa, you're tearing Tommy Apart!

Up for your own interpretation.

Dance Dance to the Music. Yes, Just Dance.

Yes it is.

Can We Save the Wheatley Elementary School in NOLA?

The Phillis Wheatley Elementary School. 2300 Dumaine St. New Orleans, LA Charles Colbert, architect. Frank Lotz Miller, photographer Idea: The Shaping Force. Photo Source: Flickr regional.modernism. Used under the Creative Commons License.

“If you tear down my school, a part of me dies with it,” were the words of Phyllis Montana-Leblanc before the Historic District Landmarks Commission of New Orleans at a hearing concerning the historic modern Phillis Wheatley Elementary School in New Orleans.

How could one not be emotionally affected upon reading these words? I am always affected upon learning that a historic building that is worth saving, is facing the wrecking ball.

The Phillis Wheatley Elementary School. 2300 Dumaine St. New Orleans,Frank Lotz Miller, photographer Idea: The Shaping Force. Photo Source: Flickr regional.modernism. LA Charles Colbert, architect;

I’ve known of the Phillis Wheatley Elementary School issue for some time now and felt compelled to dedicate a post on this Boston centric blog to shed some light on the issue of modern architecture in New Orleans and throughout the United States. The school was listed on the World Monuments Fund Watch in 2010 and is considered to be one of the top ten most significant Modern buildings in Louisiana.

Modernist buildings are in peril and before we realize, some of the best and most outstanding examples of modern architecture will be lost to demolition. This would just be detrimental to our culture and history.

I signed the petition. Will you JOIN ME?

The Bucket List: Boston Edition

Boston’s Channel 5 recently asked their “fans” on Facebook to come up with a bucket list of things and places every Bostonian must do and see before they die. Most of the things on the list are boring, overplayed and are for the most part, tourists traps. Looking at the slide show on the WCBV website, I was extremely disappointed that people in Boston do not consider Trinity Church to be one of those places they MUST see before they die. I will not rant here, I’ve already done that on Twitter and I’ve already blogged or mentioned Trinity Church here, here, here, here, here, and I’m sure there are least two or three more mentions through out The Evolving Critic.

Here’s a list of things and places EVERY Bostonian should do and see before they die. Venture out into the city and stop following the Freedom Trail (assuming every Bostonian has already done it, right?).

Trinity Church – the interior will blow you away. Please. Do. Go. See. This. American. Architectural. Masterpiece.

Boston Harbor Islands - There are 34, many open to the public. One of the best summer experiences you’ll have.

I cannot find ANY of my images I shot at the Islands a few years back. This is one is taken from http://www.boston.com

Lantern Festival-Forest Hills CemeteryTruly magical. Whether you’ve lost a loved one or not, it’s a powerful experience. I’m uncertain whether the Education Trust will host the event this year, but everyone must attend this event before they die.
Highland Park Stand Pipe – Roxbury. Roxbury is beautiful in the spring and summer. The Stand Pipe is a must see.

The Cochituate Standpipe, built in 1869. Im proud of taking this picture!

Rembrandt’s Self Portrait at the Gardner Museum. It’s in Boston, why not see it? Rembrandt painted it at age 23! AMAZING!
Walk the entire Emerald Necklace. I have NOT done this all in one day, but I have visited all of the parks individually, will complete this summer though. I have completed the entire Emerald Necklace in one day (someday I’ll write about it, for now head over to Boston Urban Safari and check out Cristy’s perspective).
Chapel at MIT. Eero Saarinen. Sculpture by Harry Bertoia. Just beautiful, oh so beautiful. So so so so beautiful. I like sacred places. I really do.

Saarinens Chapel, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Drink – Have a cocktail at Drink. Have “The Last Word” for me. Or anything with Chartreuse. ONLY 21+.

Drink. Photo: http://www.boston.com. This guy is always the one that makes my drinks. Hes excellent. They all are. I havent been in a while though.

Kayak/Canoe the Charles River. Do it.

Im the one on the back. I stole this from my friends FB page; the one in the front. Ill keep looking for my OWN photos.

What else would you recommend to Bostonians to add to their Bucket List. TRINITY CHURCH is a MUST!

One Thousand Paper Cranes for Japan

Ever since I can remember, I’ve been deeply interested in the cultures of Asia, but more specifically Japanese culture. Since I have yet to travel to Asia, my interactions with Japanese culture have been through museum collections, Japanese art history courses, community cultural events and of course, friends.

When I learn of all the terrible events going in the world, I think. I think and continue to think and think. The process is exhausting, but sometimes placing ourselves in perspective of what is going on around us, remind us why we are all here.

I’ve been thinking of the story of Sadako Sasaki, the little girl who survived the dropping of the Hiroshima bomb at age 2, but died at age 12 as a result of developing leukemia at 11. Sadako had heard of the legend of hand-folding one thousand paper cranes which promised that anyone who folds a group of one thousand cranes would be granted one wish. With a strong desired to live, Sadako began folding paper cranes with one wish in mind: good health. She died before the project was completed, but Sadako’s classmates finished folding the cranes.

This is our story. With one wish in mind, we fold one thousand cranes for Japan (and for the world). This past weekend, I was reminded of Sadako and starting folding paper cranes with my 5 year old nephew. Granted he was more interested in learning how to fold crabs, snails and penguins than folding cranes, it was the process of self-discovery that mattered. As I keep thinking of my friends in Japan and everyone affected by this tragic event, I will fold one crane unti I reach one thousand. Little did I know that all those packets of origami paper I found at Goodwill last summer would come in handy one day

It has been said that chains of a thousand paper cranes ease pain and sadness and bring hope to people who see them.

A work in progress, 1,000 paper cranes. As you can see, in the process of "installing" I damaged the ceiling. GULP.

with each fold, memories emerge. Day 4

With each fold, memories emerge. Day 4.

 

With each fold, our vision of the world becomes clearer. day 9.