Our weekly focus on the moving image and art in the streets. And other oddities.
Now screening :
1. Doug Gillen/Fifth Wall TV: Is New Brighton a future model for the British Sea Side Town?
2. Lidia Cao. Tribute to Dolores Medio. Parees Fest 2020
3. INDECLINE: On Second Thought. A reflection on gun violence in collaboration with artist David Fay.
BSA Special Feature: Visit a Sea Side Town with Doug Gillen
You can’t really send out a gilded invitation to your cousin Gentrification to come visit and be surprised when his emotionally draining wife and video-game playing snot-nosed kids are in the car with him. When you use words like “platform” to describe art-washing of a town, and your organization has a “brand director”, there won’t be much surprise when the moneyed professionals complain that music at the curated-bar across the street is keeping their new baby awake at night.
Doug at Fifth Wall is more surreptitiously stealthy than ever, gradually upping his stealthy-stealthitude as he lets this story basically tell itself while posing as a merely curious art-fan.
The story is literally everywhere you look right now, and apolitical, non-confrontational Street Art and murals are almost always intercedent. A small town is sucked dry after decades of neo-liberal economics and back-room political deals, leaving a godless lot feeling listless and depressed without prospects for the future. Broad strokes, but you’ve undoubtedly heard the concept proffered by real estate investors that comes next.
“Yes there’s a commercial side to it but there is also very much a community element to what we’ve been doing,” says one male voice as the camera scans some run-down architecture with good bones and historical character. They’ve been buying up properties and “introducing a new independent concept into them”.
You predict what comes in this chapter; small portions of fussy food, art galleries, street art, vinyl!, kooky cafes with drip coffee and cold brew, clever grandma-anti-fashion fashion, artisanal cheeses, greater police presence and the occasional night-time social cleansing of hardscrabble types pushed into other neighborhoods.
Next step, edgy lifestyle brands will need some quirky space to set up shop.
“We’re trying to keep the big boys out of our little part of town.”
“2020 is a year calling out for change,” says Doug in his wrap-up, but he knows this particular model is not at all new. It’s still a reaction to the devastation, and we all seem to be trapped in it. Even so, this can be a kind of rejuvenation that many small towns would ache for and there is reason to think that the formula can be configured to be more just to those who will get displaced – if you’re dedicated to it.
And your cousin Gentrification could be cool to hang out with, even if his very classy wife gently insults your wife and the décor of your home and the food you eat and the music you listen to.
Doug Gillen/Fifth Wall TV: Is New Brighton a future model for the British Sea Side Town?
Lidia Cao. Tribute to Dolores Medio. Parees Fest 2020
Lidia Cao paints a portrait of Dolores Medio, the Spanish writer, teacher, and journalist for the Parees Festival in Spain in this short video by Titi Muñoz.
INDECLINE: On Second Thought. A reflection on gun violence in collaboration with artist David Fay.
600 decommissioned weapons were combed over and refashioned by Las Vegas based artist David Fay into this semi-kinectic sculpture that recalls Rodin’s “The Thinker”. In an America that is fascinated by weapons, at least in movies and television, this sculpture may make people think, or not.
Produced by the amorphous art-activist group INDECLINE, the work had 58 bullets embedded in the shoulders as a somber reminder of the mass shooting in Mandalay Bay three years ago in Las Vegas.
From their press release: “The piece stands just over 6 feet tall and weighs approximately 250 pounds. It took David Fay 4 months and over 750 man-hours to complete the piece.”