It occurred to me that I might have left a lasting impression that things are never fixed in Newark, in showing only the 'before' picture
of gaps in an illuminated sign atop the Cancer Center at UMDNJ. The sign has been fixed for over a week now. I took this picture last nite.
That is the second picture I took of it last nite from inside my car. The first didn't turn out right, because I forgot I had the camera liting set to"Auto", and the flash went off! inside my windshield. This is the result.
Curiously, the heraldic crest that is blurred in all the other pix is clear in that one! So that proved a happy accident.
I had taken a picture soon after the sign was fixed and I found myself stopped at the (long) Bruce Street lite, but it was raining at the time. (When hasn't it been raining around here lately?) I got a different artsy effect shooting thru my wet windshield.
I rather like the distortions. In any case, you can see that the sign has been fixed. Newark isn't the rundown Hot L Baltimore, after all. (James Cromwell, an actor from that show, was, happenstantially, on Tavis Smiley's talk show on PBS last nite.)
Let me update one other thing today too. In my discussion of the mural
at the Greater Newark Conservancy, I speculated that the initials inside the Bears & Eagles Riverfront Stadium in the mural might have been those of the young artists who worked on the project. Robin Dougherty, the Executive Director of the Conservancy, emailed me to say:
Regarding the question you posed, yes, indeed, the initials are those of the high school students who were part of the Newark Youth Leadership Project in the summer of 1999 who put the mural together.
In returning to my original picture of the part of the mural in which the initials appear, to crop it to show here, I noticed writing on one of the buildings to the left of the Stadium that looks suspiciously like the full name of one young artist.
There is just so much to see in that mural. Small wonder, I guess, with a big mural. I'm not sure of the dimensions, but it must be at least 40 feet wide. I don't want to bother Robin again to ask, but if anyone from GNC (the Conservancy, not vitamin store) chances to see this and has that info for me, s/he should not hesitate to write me at ResurgenceCity@aol.com
In looking thru fotos on my hard drive tonite, I rediscovered something I had forgotten. My niece Karen and grandnephew Josh flew in from Oakland, California* for the Christo/Jeanne-Claude mass installation "The Gates" on February 23rd of last year. (That date was easy for me to remember, since it is my younger sister's birthday, and we called her on my cellphone during our Central Park adventure.) I met Karen and Josh at JFK, and we toured the display on a brilliant sunny day, and took a great many pictures. What I had forgotten is that I started to create a webpage for relatives (especially Karen and Josh), friends, and others to show them how wonderful an event it was. But there was too much work involved to do in a single day (February 27th, 2005 my late father's birthday), and I had to put it aside for later. The day or two delay I intended has turned into almost 20 months.
I called it up and looked at it this morning for the first time in months. I found the effect of the mass of fotos (70 already incorporated, others waiting to be included) stunning. I don't think I'll ever be able to finish it as I intended, and see backslashes marking places I wanted to put more fotos. But I don't remember which particular fotos were to go in which particular spots, on what basis, so may never 'finish' that page. Still, there are
70 fotos on it.
So I decided to put the unfinished page online and tell you about it. The URL is http://members.aol.com/Schoonmaker2000/Gates/Gates.html
It's not Newark-specific, of course, but (a) one of the best things about Newark is that it is so close, with such good transportation, that we find it easy to get into New York and out any time we want, and (b) my friends Gaetano from the Ironbound and Joe from Belleville (with whom I viewed some areas of the exhibit late one day, in fading lite) think it would be great if Christo could come up with a project for Newark. The current wrappings of City Hall and the Stickel Bridge in fabric behind which renovations are taking place look almost like Christo projects. I have some pix of those wrappings that I'll show here sometime soon. In a few days. Or 20 months, depending on how busy I am.
Traffic was badly backed up on I-280 yesterday when I was trying to get to work, so I got off at First Street and drove thru Downtown Newark via Sussex Avenue. Along the way I chanced to stop in heavy traffic alongside this striking building, with crenelations and what appear to be heraldic markings. Tho it appears to be an apartment house with a convenience store/bodega on the ground floor today, perhaps it was some kind of lodge in the olden days. Does anyone reading this know? If so, please advise me via ResurgenceCity@aol.com
, and I'll tell the others.
* Oakland is about 25 miles from one of those "Newarks of the World", Newark, California, which is in the southern East Bay area. Bizarrely, there is a "Union City" (California) only 5 miles from that Newark. The real Union City (NJ) is 10 miles from the real Newark.