Meeting of the Styles

More often than I ever expected I’ve found myself in the city I live so close to, Chicago and more and more I’ve fallen in love with it, the neighborhoods, the real city not the tourist traps near the coast.

My new love is photographing art, anything from murals to graffiti.  I’ve written about this before and you can visit my Flickr (click here) with just some of my photos.  I can only upload a certain amount each month since I don’t want to pay for it an only have a free account but I also have a Tumblr where I post my photos too (click here).  My past blog about art in the city is here.

Most of the time I drive around until I see something I want to photograph but I also try to find places online to look at.  I found one of the walls from the Meeting of the Styles 2012 on 36th and Kedzie which was amazing!  I took 100 photos and my camera died so I have to go back to finishm, that’s how much art there is there!  There are three other locations that I’m going to visit too.

It was just incredible!  All of these beautiful colors swirling around each other and forming these beautiful shapes with aliens in the background.  Dark, postapocalyptic scenes were brought to life and no matter how creepy the imagery was, you couldn’t help but stare at its beauty!  My favorite was a pair of dragons on the Crawford Steel Company building.  This beats so many painting in the Art Institute of Chicago, especially that stupid one with the dot in the corner or the painting that you do in kindergarten where you dip 3 marbles in paint (red, yellow and blue) and roll them on your paper?  For those of you who’ve been there, you know exactly what I’m talking about.  People buy those painting for so much money and hang them in a museum when real art is on the street for free.  I don’t understand.

Unfortunately in the parking lot of the Crawford Steel Company on Kedzie some of the art on either end has been written over with scribbles and thin lines paling in comparison to the color, depth and talent that preceded it.  What I love about this is that this company allows and encourages graffiti, taking away this negative image from it.  However they also puts rules into place stating on their garage door that permission has to be given, previous work has to be respected and it has to be appropriate.  This is a wonderful thing that I think more businesses should do!  Why do we have to look at an old, dirty wall when it could come to life with color?

With business being open to the idea of graffiti as art and setting rules like those above, they could encourage youth to express themselves in a positive way and especially when it’s something as incredibly beautiful as this!!  Why not?  I’d be much more eager to go down to local business to photograph the art and then why not go inside and check out the business itself?  It positive for the business, community and the kid or young adult, whoever is the artist is.

It’s such a challenge to find amazing work downtown since I don’t know where all of it is and this was such a beautiful surprise!  I highly recommend checking it out and going on your own little adventure to find some real art in our city.

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