Thursday, April 26, 2007

Sauntering Through the Slope

April 26 PM Walk
After three previous days of rather paltry walks, I promised Chester that we would check out Prospect Park and some of Park Slope. We knew that uncomissioned street art would be largely unavailable. But we were pleasantly surprised to end up walking down Garfield Place and stumbled upon the bubblegum brownstone. Having read about this Park Slope curiosity months ago, Chester and I felt a sense of pride in having found the location of note. Check out a brief excerpt here

I suggested, and Chester agreed, that this indeed qualified as Street Art rather than Graffiti. Although I'm not so sure that this guy's neighbors (and property owners) feel it's art rather than a travesty to property value. However you label it, it was a nice surprise for us on this walk, and a nice shot of personality to a sometimes uptight and pretentous neighborhood.

Prospect Park, BKLYN
Park Slope, BKLYN

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Che Fought the Law, and Won

April 25 PM Walk
We've done this walk several times as it serves as our "stand by" walk when we have an hour to kill and we want to chance the possibility of meeting up with a couple of dogs at the dog run in Carroll Gardens. But today, unlike the previous days, was fraught with rain and dreariness. Chester hates the rain, but a little coaxing from yours truly and the promise of the possibility of more graffiti vs. street art challenges, Chester made the trip with me. While we approached a warehouse on the southeast corner of 3rd and Bond Streets, we noticed a piece of street art that had been torn halfway off, leaving only the top remaining. Chester was a bit apprehensive about climbing the skinny ladder to the former loading dock to pose in front of where the art was located. However, during his indecisiveness, New York's finest approached and interrogated us about our association with the "installation", our interest in graffiti and whether or not we were the ones who had defaced the building. I merely produced our photographic evidence of art searches and walks around Brooklyn contained on a Sony Cybershot memory stick. He was less than impressed and after taking down our address and name, sent us on your merry way. Happy to be rid of Johnny Law, Chester decided to take care of business right where the police van (not even a cruiser!) had parked. Sweet justice...
Street Art vs. Graffiti? Che says "street art". 9th and Court Sts. BKLYN

Street Art Vs. Graffiti? Che says "street art". Carroll Gardens, BKLYN

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Graffiti vs. Street Art, Part II

April 24 PM Walk
As luck would have it, for the second time in as many days, we ran in to Chester's Rottie pal, Gracie while walking down the street. After a few minutes of romping on the street corner, we set out on nearly the exact same walking route as we had done the previous day. You may think that this might be a monotonous activity for the Che, but rest assured, there was very little monotony this day. Gracie, who is still without a permanent and loving home, has proven herself a worthy companion for Chester and is frequently the initiator of a calorie burning romp.
But being a cerebral dog, with a knack for distinguishing the difference between graffiti and street art, Chester was more interested in seeking out urban decorations. The above artistry (both black dogs and yellow pant wearing female excluded), he determined, was merely graffiti, with minimal aesthetic appeal. Is was however, worthy of being peed upon-- I think that counts for something.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Che's Play Pal

April 23 PM Walk
As this was really only the 3rd day of stupendously warm weather, Chester let me know that he wasn't into a long walk. So it was fortunate when, while walking down the street, we ran into one of Chester's doggie pals. Gracie is a Rottweiler guard dog who lives at Greg's Rubbish Removal, just 3 blocks north of us on 3rd ave. A kind woman has taken it upon herself to walk Gracie twice daily and to covertly try and find her a new home. Living in a junkyard is a pretty dirty job for anyone, but especially for a puppy with as sweet of a disposition as Gracie's. The really sad part of this whole situation is, as gentrification and development takes hold of Gowanus, that Greg's Rubbish Removal (Gracie's home) is slated for demolition in just 8 days-- meaning a very uncertain future for tail-having Gracie. She could really use a couple of things-- a new home, regular walks, and a bath (rolling in motor oil doesn't do much for a healthy coat). With such a great personality and spirit, it would be a shame for Gracie to have to be put in an unfamiliar situation. She is up for adoption should you, or anyone care to take her in. If she were adopted, Chester would lose a play mate, but Gracie would gain a real home. That's a trade off Chester certainly understands.
Gracie (available for adoption)

Che and Gracie, J.J. Byrne Dog Park, Park Slope, BKLYN