photo of the month
from randy kato

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It seems that recently we've been losing things around here. I mean places, places with history, places that we adore, places that - despite all this - mean nothing to the relentless invasion of bank branches, drug stores, and luxury condos.

This month's photo was taken inside a massive place that we will soon lose, the Domino Sugar Factory in Brooklyn. This landmark will soon be demolished in order to build yet more high-rise apartment buildings.

So, artist Kara Walker has confected "A SUBTLETY" or the Marvelous Sugar Baby, an Homage to the unpaid and overworked Artisans who have refined our Sweet tastes from the cane fields to the Kitchens of the New World on the Occasion of the demolition of the Domino Sugar Refining Plant. We went to see it.

...and smell it. The whole place simply reeks of sugar. The wall in the background is not covered in tar, that's molasses, from a century and half of producing the sweet stuff.

The centerpiece of this art installation is a stories-tall sort of sphinx-turned-mammy, coated in white sugar, but these smaller slave boys made of molasses and in varying stages of melting were in some ways even more compelling. They are at once tragic and cute, literally sweet yet bitter in their symbolism.


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