I’ve never really thought about it before but i, like so many others, have long been enthralled by urban decay. I’ve sought out ruins for exploration and art. I’ve been in awe of their derelict structures, entranced by the beauty of their abandonment. It’s put me in search of Urban Exploration sects though i never too seriously sought to get involved, i’d totally go exploring one night if you asked me to! My exploring may have begun with Dad teaching us how to scoot under the chain link gate at LeFleur’s Bluff (and getting caught one of those times), and later on his midnight tree-planting on state property (or federal or city, whichever). At any rate, i’ve been an explorer for a long time, after all, it’s the whole reason my blogging ever began.
So, suddenly the realization that my research paper has evolved into something right up my alley is hitting home! it began as a “guided tour” of the Beltline, relating structures along a segment to the evolution of the American Built Environment. But comments from my teacher that suggested focusing on urban decay, unpoliced spaces and art (I was planning a section on atl graffiti) and then last weekends visit to the kiang gallery (previous post) really got me on this path of urban exploring which brings up unregulated spaces and how we act/react to them (do you tap your marta card when the bus driver is nowhere in sight?), which brings up unsanctioned art—graffiti—and sanctioned art—Art on the Beltline. And what does this obsession with, this aesthetic we’ve promoted out of urban decay say about us? where is development going? once urban renewal meant tear down and built new, now it means (more often than before anyway) preserve and celebrate the old and derelict.