The Art Battle Continues
So vandals hit us again. More tags. And bleeding cat eyes. (The cat eyes happened while I was working in the shop. I stepped out to grab a coffee, locked the door, and when I turned around the black paint was still leaking down the wall.) So we hit back with more paste-up action – and Illuminati Cat was born! Bam!
While it’s a bit annoying – all this back-and-forth with facelace brats – (jeez, I sound like a crotchety old man) – we’ve quite enjoyed the battle. It’s caused a lot of interest from passers-by on the street, a bit of online buzz, and helped us further define our general Grey Tiger vision. It’s even inspired fresh ideas for decorating our washrooms.
In some way – and this is most interesting – it’s helped to make the artistic part of this whole endeavour come more to the fore. It’s helped to soften the edges of the project – you know, paying bills and all that – and serves as a reminder that art – actually being artistically engaged through the process – is crucial. We’re artists. Which means being aware of and engaged with our surroundings – not just inside our shop, not just with the business, but with the neighbourhood itself – the city and its people, faceless or not – in a very particular way.
On another level it makes me think about – and be more sensitive to – how we are helping to gentrify our neighbourhood – something I once railed against as a younger artist – and how certain people feel feel and react to the changing face of Bloordale. We’re in a position of great responsibility and influence. While we’re doing something good – not just for us but, in the eyes of many of our neighbours, the neighbourhood – we are also helping to usher-in a kind of unwelcomed change for some other neighbours.
That’s some heavy stuff, to say the least. I’m not yet sure how I feel about it.
Funny: the so-called vandals seem to have have done us a favour. They’ve helped to remind us of our position and direction. They’ve inspired a lot of interesting conversation and contemplation. And they’ve inadvertantly become participants in the making of Grey Tiger. …
Anyway, yeah, so that happened. And there’s more to come. More amazing, mysterious, creative activities, thoughts and feelings to report very soon. …