Housing Complex

Urban Veneration

Someone said something at a panel I attended last night (about which I'll blog later) that reminded me of this little shrine thing I passed in Anacostia a few weeks ago. A local artist by the name of Melvin was talking about making the arts relevant to young people in communities impacted by drugs and crime, and pointed out that impromptu, temporary assemblages in the streetscape–often in honor of a person killed–should be valued as a form of artistic expression. He called it "urban veneration." I won't be looking at these memorials in the same way again.

UPDATE, 3:37 p.m. - Commenter Eli points out that a local blog already does a really good job of this.

  • eli

    http://dcshrines.blogspot.com/ is the most amazing blog documenting local memorials. check it out.

  • Rick Mangus

    Blah, Blah, Blah, memorials to people involved in criminal acts, who cares, I don't!

  • http://offthemall.org/ Bryant Turnage

    It might be a good idea to remember that not all victims of drugs and crime are themselves drug users or criminals. In neighborhoods where crime and drugs are rampant, there are many innocent people who are just trying to do their jobs, raise their kids, and live their lives in a place that they call home.

  • Rick Mangus

    'Bryant Turnage' yea and they same ones who look the other way when drug sales and crime are right in front of them, people heal thy self!

  • Rick Mangus

    Correction: the not they.