_ _ BAN BLIGHT
A stock photo of these abandoned buildings was used as a visual clue for the phrase URBAN BLIGHT on the TV game show Jeopardy, I tagged them. Eliminating the first two letters further references the TV game show and creates a double entendre — a reminder of the filth and ruin we often filter from our sensory experiences.
_ _BAN BLIGHT tag has been re-invented as illustration. This graffiti, intended to serve as a visual reminder, has morphed into a visual icon of sorts; indeed, with more power and expression than the nameless abandoned building that serves as its host. Graffiti has always been about title, possession and property issues. Let the beat go on.
Arty Meets Irene
In the wake of Hurricane Irene, the simple jester of Arty going for his walk and shaking off the water serves as a poetic reminder that life does indeed go on.
12th Ward Memorial:
Bayhill Park, on the corner of Sheridan Avenue and Dove Street in the Arbor Hill neighborhood of Albany, features a flagpole and memorial identified as “12th Ward Memorial — In Tribute to Those Who Served”. When I moved to the neighborhood its deteriorated state was a sacrilege, and contributed to the blight of the neighborhood. I decided to revamp the 12th Ward Memorial at Bayhill Park.
I contacted Scott LoBaido to paint the flag. Scott is a public artist well known for his “50 Flags Across America” project. Niki Psomas Miller and Samson Contompasis helped me scrape and prime the surface for Scott’s flag image. The City supported the project, but couldn’t provide materials or help; I paid for Scott’s materials. Alex Psomas and his co-workers from Weichert Realtors spent a day landscaping and doing repairs. Once I marbleized the columns, finished the painting and re-hung the title, the city kicked-in. They repaired the fence, created 2 lovely flowerbeds, painted the flagpole, repaired the spotlight and hung a flag.