Friday, November 13, 2009

More Gowanus Views

BAX has hung works by Angela Jimenez that portray South Brooklyn's most alluring subject. I think the widespread appeal stems from the Venice effect mixed with some cozy effluviana and a fascination with plastic surgery and embalming as the canal is not at all what it once was in either form or content. It has some serious industrial botox. Long ago the artery sheltered anadramous fish that sought fresh water for spawning, later dredged, shored up with concrete the channel became the mule of the brownstone builders and industrialists. Now, nifty condos and studio lofts later, the canal elicits devotion. One day I'd love to watch Miyazake's Spirited Away projected on its greasy green scum. Maybe the fish will come back, some already have.

I really enjoyed Angela's work, because like many I can't get enough of the Gowanus. It's creepy, scary, beautiful, monstrous, the last "brook" in Brooklyn. Historic essays by Victor Favorotino accompany Angela's Silver C-prints. I found them all interesting, but was most captivated by the story of the sailors kept captive on the cement ship. Double click the page below for details.

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