To make a mark is one of the most primal forms of communication. This gesture often relies on a simple indicator—an X, a line, the application of color. We mark to signal ownership, ensure memory, or confer respect. Alternatively, the physical marking of buildings is often a means of indicating vacancy, instability, or other important information.
A Way, Away (Listen While I Say) begins by marking the building at 3721 Washington Boulevard, which has been slated for demolition. Painted gold by people who, whether as neighbors, occupants, or others, have a relationship to the site, the building is at once honored and shrouded by color—highlighting the final moment in its storied life. These golden bricks signify the preciousness and value of both material and community, while also calling attention to its imminent demolition.
Place & Displacement in Marking
As a part of the Marking phase of the A Way, Away project, local artists, Ilene Berman and Pacia Anderson led community members in a discussion on the invisible processes of demolition and their effects on community. Participants were able to leave their own mark on the site through a sign-making activity on the topics of place and displacement and the roles individuals, institutions, and communities play.