Monday, January 29, 2007

Late and unlamented

I gotta admit.... I've always been awfully hard on that poor old Modernist building that used to sit in front of the State Hospital.

Looking back at it now, I can see it was actually kind of an interesting building, in that Mid-Century Modern kind of way which has come to intrigue me over the last few years. It had a pattern of various brightly colored tiling on its spandrel panels, and a bold grouping of bay windows on the top story. Stone-clad stair towers connected to the main building by bright blue metal panel corridors. The row of square windows on the one-story hallway wing, surrounded by stone lintels, surely made a beautiful pattern seen up close.

But 12 years ago I didn't really appreciate any of these relatively subtle gestures. All I saw was a big ugly orange thing blocking the intended view of a grand old Classical building. It really was put in the wrong spot, and maybe sheathed in the wrong color of brick for its location. But those were its only real crimes.

I don't regret the restoration of State Hospital's commanding front elevation... but I wish I had more photographs of the building that once obscured it. Would it have killed me to spare one negative to properly photograph the front elevation?

1 comment:

Matt Fernandez said...

I've got a good one for you. The picture of the kids sledding in Tilles Park in the winter of 1997 just happens to contain my brother, my best friend, and myself, as well as two sleds that we still own. They haven't gotten quite as much use lately. I'm the kid in the middle if you're wondering.