Sugarhouse and the Divide


Sugarhouse and the Divide
Originally uploaded by 730N

This painting is currently up for the remainder of the week at the Highwire Gallery in Philadelphia.

Sugarhouse Casino is a project slated to be built along the Delaware Riv er in Philadelphia, just north of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge. The site was a former Sugar Mill, producing the brand Jack Frost Sugar. The site has been empty of major structures for 10 years. There are many issues that surround this plan: from shady government deals, to real concerns about the future and economy of fishtown. Many people feel strongly about the issue and firmly choose a side. Frequently, arguments from the other side fall on deaf ears.

I painted the field where the casino will be built.

Much like the Nine Mile Run Restoration painting, this landscape is a highly politicized zone that is on the cusp of significant change, both in it’s characteristics and it’s relationship with the surrounding nature and culture.

The major urban bridge in the distance serves as an icon of this cusp of change, sitting quite incongruously in the distance–the only human structure in the landscape, taking you from here to there. In a certain sense, our own value systems are similar, supporting us as we move and change. Whatever those values are, they will change this space in the near future.

The ballot boxes are for people to vote whether they want the casino to be built, and why. One Box for yes, and one box for no. I peeked today, and it seems as if “No” is slightly edging out “Yes.”

The gallery is 1 mile from the Casino site. I will report back with the official tally in 1 week when I pick up the painting.

This painting falls into the relationships to place category.

I suppose that’s it for now… headed to work!

By Noel Hefele

Noel Hefele is an artist living in the Bronx

2 comments

  1. that’s really a fantastic post ! ! added to my favourite blogs list..

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