Filed under: AL, Architecture, art, B'ham Wiki, Birmingham, Birmingham Alabama, Birmingham, AL, Cities, Civic Engagement, Magic City Flickr Group, Photographs, Random shots, State of the Region, urban issues, Vulcan, vulcan park, Works Progress Administration
UPDATE: Click on the images below to see exactly where the damage has occured on the signs.
Vulcan. I affectionately refer to him here as “The Big Guy atop Red Mountain.” It is hard to think of any modern event covered in Birmingham, Alabama without thinking of the money shot many refuse to leave without, that of the god of fire and forging as he overlooks Jones Valley. The scary thing is, recently there have been bad things going on at the base of the statue.
Considering the fact that I did not see this tagging going on during the holiday season, I can only assume that it’s occurred in past couple of weeks. These interpretive signs that describe the view from the park overlook are not the only victims of area vandals. Picnic tables that are located throughout Vulcan’s current home (he moved there in 1936 and it was recently restored, the project completed in 2004) have also been “tagged” by some that probably don’t care about the significance of the world’s largest cast iron statue.
A common theme at Friday’s state of the region luncheon was “as goes [insert name of city here], goes the region.” Perhaps as we prepare to hold our elected officials accountable for the image of our city, perhaps we need to hold each other accountable for the image as well. At what point does it become your problem? Hopefully sooner rather than later. Especially as The Big Guy gets renewed national interest and in so doing, so does Birmingham, Alabama and the rest of the region.
Let me know what you think?
Filed under: art, Birmingham Alabama, Birmingham, AL, Civic Engagement, Photographs, preservation, theater, urban issues, Woodlawn, Works Progress Administration
Today was a great day at Woodlawn High School. The school’s longtime home along 1st Avenue North celebrated the completion of its extensive renovation project with a ribbon cutting taking place on campus this morning. Among the dignitaries present was Mountain Brook mayor and Woodlawn High alum Terry Oden. He spoke passionately about the 1939 mural that serves as the frieze for the building’s auditorium. A group of alumni listed on this page describing the project, have been successful thus far of raising $85,000 of the estimated $190,000 it will take to return this landmark piece to excellent condition. It was the largest Works Progress Administration project of its kind ever completed, with the mural painted on canvas and then secured to the wall in a way that prevents it from being removed for rehabilitation. The original funds for the renovation project did not include monies to complete the renovation, leading to the effort under way through alumni.
We’ve written about this school in the past, mentioning the effort. Now that the renovations have been completed, it only makes sense for the mural to receive the attention that it deserves. Mr. Oden had several cards available for interested people to fill out and provide was is a tax-deductible donation for the project. That information is available at the Woodlawn High alumni website. While students are enjoying an incredible renovation of their academic home away from home, I think that if not now in the future they will appreciate a truly completed effort with the restored mural. I’d like to thank the individual from Volker that was kind enough to provide me an image to go along with this post.
There’s also a play opening tonight at the Playhouse Costume co-op across from the Alabama Theatre. “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” is the first production for Theater Downtown, a group formed to provide “downtown theater for downtown Birmingham.” Click here to view the activeculture.info posting for the event that runs through next week. It should be a great opportunity to support local theater and keep one more thing going. If you know have any ideas for things to cover, let me know.
Enjoy the day.