Rubble In Memoriam

Photos by Roman.

I don’t know the story behind this shrine but it’s not usually good news. One assumes the worst: a death. And yet, what could be a more appropriate portrayal of the ruin left behind from a death than a symbolically delirious pile of fragments?

It’s a shambles, not the dead but those left alive.

I’ve almost certainly spent too much of my time since retirement from activism and working watching episodes of Time Team and that has seriously warped the way I see things like this. Time Team, in case you missed it, is / was a U.K. TV program that combined reality TV with science documentary with (ultimately) a sort of popular archeology movement, all anchored by several academics with vivid, if not to say eccentric, personalities who, since they were all mostly specialists, fit the TV trope of coming on each episode to occupy each their niche in the drama.

No, I haven’t seen the new series yet.

Seeing this shrine, I now wonder how ancient is that practice of adding stones to an altar, grave or cenotaph — not to mention broken items as offerings? Wasn’t it pebbles of quartz that people would bring to place at an altar during the first millennium? And our bronze age relations, they were no fools in bringing broken items as offerings. It wasn’t simply a matter of economy, I suspect, but rather in a spiritual sense, it was a retirement of the item offered, a giving back.

And why do I have this image of a small dog held suspended above water but its legs, all four, helplessly in full furious paddle?

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Photo by Roman.

Cats & Dogs

Here are two strays from the 2021 Artists of the Wall. I’m pretty sure these are panels I missed photographing back in 2021 or perhaps I simply did not like the resulting photos. Though… I have seen panels replaced or elaborated over the year that they’re on the wall.

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2021 Artists of the Wall. Photo by Roman.
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2021 Artists of the Wall. Photo by Roman.

Artists of the Wall, Year 2003

This is another series of images captured from the annual “Artists of the Wall” event in Chicago’s Loyola Park. These are from the year 2003 and they are the images that I liked the best. Like the earlier “Artists of the Wall” posts this year, these were taken with a largely automated Pentax film camera. The prints were scanned a few years ago. A regular visitor to this blog might have been wondering if I had skipped 2003. So was I, but I found the files eventually.

2003 was the 10th Artists of the Wall event. Each year the organizers suggest two topics or themes for the artwork. Generally, people end up doing whatever they please, including sometimes addressing one or the other theme. My impression of 2003 is that people may have paid closer attention to the suggested themes than in most previous years but maybe not by much. But people here in the States do have a fascination with the odometer’s rolling zero.

Click on any image to enlarge it.

Artists of the Wall, Year 2006

Every June (with a COVID break) since the early 1990s, folks from the Rogers Park neighborhood decorate a 600 foot concrete retaining wall / park bench. What I do, not every year but frequently, is wander along the wall some weeks later and photograph whatever I happen to like. Or in the case of actual film photography, whatever I could afford.

These 2006 photos were done using film and a largely automatic Pentax camera. The prints were scanned several years ago. The photos below are the images I like. It was a pretty good year, but judge for yourself.

For more artwork from the Artists of the Wall program, click on the AotW tag.

Click on any image to enlarge it.

Artists of the Wall, Year 2004

“Artists of the Wall” is an annual event in Loyola Park where various folks from Rogers Park decorate a stretch of wall / bench; unfortunately I know none of the artists though a few are professional. These are some photos I took of the artwork in 2004. They were taken with a very automatic Pentax camera. The prints were scanned several years ago.

Did I not take photos of the 2003 artwork? I don’t know. I’ll keep looking. For photos of artwork from other years, click on the “AotW” tag.

Click on any photo to enlarge it.

Artists of the Wall, Year 2002

Here are my selected photos from the 2002 Artists of the Wall event that is held annually in Chicago’s Loyola Park. These are scanned film prints once again and, once again, I know nothing about the artists except that there are a set of regulars over the years. 2002 was, I think, a pretty good year. Judge for yourself:

Click on any image to enlarge it.

Artists of the Wall, Year 2001

These are scanned photos of the annual Artists of the Wall event that is held in the Chicago Park District’s Loyola Park. I have no knowledge of any of the artists so this is hardly represents “documentation” of the event, but the artwork posted here is all the stuff that I thought was worth sharing. Some times it’s a full panel. Other times it is but a detail.

Click any photo to enlarge it.

Artists of the Wall, Year 2000

I’ve been revisiting some old photos, taken with a largely automated Pentax film camera. They were scanned from prints several years ago.

These are some images captured from the annual Artists of the Wall event in Chicago’s Loyola Park at the turn of the century. It would be nice to say these document the event, but the artists are all unknown to me.

Click on any image tile to enlarge it.

Artists of the Wall, 2021

For about 600 feet along the beach in Loyola Park, there is a concrete retaining wall / park bench that, some three decades ago, was a major magnet for graffiti, most of it distinctly inartistic if not downright threatening. What began as a housekeeping experiment evolved into an annual community institution: segments of the wall, freshly sandblasted and primed, were licensed out to whomever in the community wanted to express themselves. Make an event of it. And so they did. After missing 2020 because of the COVID plague, this year’s event was held over the June 19 – 20 weekend.

I don’t know the institutional history of the event. As it is in a city park, the Chicago Park District has been involved from the start, but there have been other institutional players involved in the past. Today it seems to be primarily the responsibility of the Park District’s Loyola Park Advisory Council.

Any complete history of the event is absent the web: no list of participants, no documentation of their artwork, no record of who “won” or when prizes first were awarded. The advisory council’s Facebook page has photos as far back as 2012. I’ve posted selections of my own photos from 2019 and 2018 and 2017. I’ve been photographing the wall since around the turn of the century, so you’ll find photos from earlier Artists of the Wall events scattered among the earlier posts on Yip Abides as the temptation to sometimes use them as illustrations was irresistible.

So here is my contribution to the cloud, a selection of complete panels or detail therein and by no means a complete record for the year, only of what I liked:

(Click any image to enlarge it.)