The Allentown area of Buffalo is now home to some interesting murals. If you walk around the neighbourhood of Allen Street and College Street, this is what you might see:
below: ‘Voyage’ by Chuck Tingley, 2014. Commissioned by MyBuffaloPride and Loop Magazine and dedicated to Buffalo’s LGBT community and its allies. “In a world of scrutiny, we have the power to embrace our differences and use our inner light to guide us through the darkest of times.”
below: The corner of Allen Street and Wadsworth Street.
below: Nietzsche (German composer and philosopher) with the quote “Without music life would be a mistake”. When I googled to make sure that that was an actual quote, I found a quote from a letter that he wrote in 1888: “Music … frees me from myself, it sobers me up from myself, as though I survey the scene from a great distance … It is very strange. It is as though I had bathed in some natural element. Life without music is simply an error, exhausting, an exile.” The picture is on the side of a Nietzsche Bar.
below: It’s About Time, with three red fists on the upper part of the Allen Street Hardware Cafe. One is holding a yellow paint roller and one is holding a yellow spray paint can. The third fist is in the background and is holding either tools or paint brushes or markers? Painted by the Allen Street Street Art Collective (ASSA).
below: ‘Tribute to Spain Rodriguez’ by Ian DeBeer. Rodriguez was a comic artist who was born in Buffalo and the piece is largely about a fight that he got into in the bar across the street (once the Jamestown, now the Nietzsche).
below: When this mural was first completed, the grey parts were black. The large picture of the man that stands between the windows on the left and those in the middle, was quite distinct. Now, you might have missed him when you first looked at the picture.
below: The pink stripes in the background of the finger-like portions of this mural have also faded considerably since the mural was painted in 2013. “The work we do is not for the faint of heart”.
below: The last ASSA mural features an iron fireman. It’s a long horizontal mural with the words Iron and Fireman written in large letters over shapes that resemble flames.
below: Between the two words is a painting of a black ‘iron fireman’, a robot-like creature shovelling coal to feed the fire. This was the logo for the Iron Fireman, a coal stoker first developed in the 1920’s by Thomas Harry Banfield and Cyrus Jury Parker. A coal stoker mechanically feeds coal into a furnace or boiler – the Iron Fireman was a commercial success in the days when coal was a commonly used fuel.
below: One of the other interesting things about Buffalo is how the architecture is different here, or at least different from what I am used to in Toronto. The building with the green details on the front is the Puritan Building, built in 1893. It has recently been renovated with the Billy Club restaurant on the ground level and three storeys of apartments above. And yes, that is a purple house on the right. Many of the houses in the area are painted in bright and cheerful colours.
below: She’s almost disappeared.
below: But he’s as vibrant as ever.