Tuesday, February 8, 2011

DC Grunge

After such a lazy weekend last week I was ready to get out and about so on Saturday Jeff and I went down DC to scout around and look for 'grunge and graffiti' photos. The rain was drizzling down but not enough to stop us, we just had to shield our cameras. I think the image above was where somebody slept during the previous night. I really liked the way the girl in the mural was doing the same as me.
Across the road from the mural was a block of apartments, dreary architecture but appealing in their geometry.
We'd had quite a late start so headed to Adams Morgan to grab lunch. I spotted the artwork above, very much inspired by the British grafitti artist Banksy. So many street artists now copy his style and also his method of painting the artwork in a studio then transferring it to the street by stencil or printed cut outs. I was secretly hoping to find a Banksy artwork as I admire him tremendously but we didn't see one today.
We had lunch in a little restaurant specializing in South American food where I had a Salvadorian sausage sandwich which tasted just like it had come from Subway. Whatever. The beer was OKish too. But the decor was very cool with photos and masks covering the walls. There were also dozens of dollar bills stuffed in the masks which I'm assuming meant good luck. Fuelled, we left and continued our quest.
Just a short distance away was the abandoned McMillan Reservoir  Sand Filtration Site. It was odd because Jeff suggested it and yet I'd only been researching it a few days previously. It was frustrating as we couldn't find any way of getting in so had to take photos through the fence. I did manage to get some info from a security guard from the water treatment building across the road so I'll have to follow up with that.
From there we drove around downtown DC but still wanted more grunge shots so we ended up by the 9:30 Club, a favorite haunt of mine. 
This fabulous ruined old house stood alone in a decrepit industrial site surrounded by barbed wire, empty plastic Coca Cola crates and trash blowing around. Every crevice and opening was completely covered in creepers like tentacles, giving the impression that the vines were trying to pull the old building down underground.
Every sign and lamp post was plastered with band and local artist stickers along with graffiti swabbed on walls and trash cans. 
We exchanged a few words with the doorman of the 9:30 Club. I adore this place and have been many times. The music, acoustics of the building, the food and the beer are all great. I've spent many hours standing outside the front doors to ensure that I would be first in line. I've exchanged smiles with Tom from Keane and lit a cigarette for Justin from The Darkness. This venue just simply rocks. Jeff and I walked along the road towards Stuart and discovered a Wall of Gum. Never having been far down the line while waiting for entry to the 9:30, I'd not noticed this before. Though gross, it was rather endearing that this tradition has been allowed to continue and not been cleaned up. I suppose with no residents in the immediate vicinity, who is there to care?
A couple more photos and we were about done. The rain had almost stopped but the air was still grey and heavy, dragging the temperature down as the afternoon slowly plodded to meet the evening. It was time to head home, warm up and get ready for Sunday.

1 comment:

kemp-y-QUA!! said...

wow, i really like your photo journey today. i love seeing the graffiti and vandalism that these kids express themselves with. i wish i understood all of what they are saying.

nice pics