Brett- Creative Expression

Choose a street with a wide variety of creative expression, and Walk it. Try to divorce the branding from aesthetics, and look for the human hands and hearts on view. Don’t be too judgmental, and try to feel empathy for all the creative souls seeking to express themselves as best they can, working with what they’ve got.

In a city of never ending arrivals
I Walk seeking a color.

To walk beside

and underneath and through.

Red

The color of desire,

but not the color of my eyes.

I don’t imagine it to be

aloft, dragging eyes above

bedraggled faces.

Yet there it is,

the color of the that spilt blood

and the pain and the gloss

of a mid autumn sale.

Green

is everywhere in New York City.

It’s in the streets and on the walls

and colors a thousand temporary homes

of precision and destruction.

It marks our feeble attempts to believe

we are free of the din and the cameras

for a moment of passing consumption in

Our Parks.

For the final part of this weeks walk, I continued in the theme of “find something and walk to it.” Unnerved by the consumption of Manhattan, but inspired by the “Walks of life” Sculptures on display in Madison Square park, I decided to take a good look at the creative expressions of people from all walks of life. So I looked for a Creative Expression, and then walked to it.

I allowed anything that was a clear expression of creativity to be a destination. This ranged from fine art, to Graffiti, to patterns in tile, to Window Displays, to Corporate branding. Some of the most striking examples were the ornate patterns in Tile across three designer tile shops, the book display at the Jewish Children’s Library, And the decorative Plexiglass surrounding a Bank Of America sign. I allowed myself to look past the messaging the Window displays were attempting to convey, and simply appreciated the Aesthetics being presented. As someone who generally avoids viewing advertising, I was struck by how much creative talent is on view at street level. I felt the struggle of many people to express themselves as beautifully as possible, inside of tight constraints placed on them by their paymasters. The contrast to the whimsical display and political commentary of the two public art pieces I saw, Walks of Life, by Tony Cragg in Madison Square park, and Eyes on The Ground by Cindy Kane at the Flatiron building was striking.

The Display work felt like some troubled souls, yearning to be free. But the art installations felt like freedom of expression.