Saturday, July 14, 2012

Down into the heart of hipsterville

A promising break in the weather today saw me hop on the bike, down St Georges Road and into Fitzroy.  There, I think I covered every single street and laneway between Brunswick and Nicholson Streets up to Gertrude Street, dodging the hordes of meandering hipsters converging on the Rose Street market. At the market (which I stumbled on, never been there before) I saw an artist friend with a big interest in ghost signs who has a stall there. He, like me, loves the parallel worlds above Melb's ground levels and paints versions of old industrial signs. He also mentioned that many of the older ghost signs leave traces of a vivid cobalt blue coat, some of which I saw today. Looking around him, he described the blokes as all looking like 'Ned Kelly at a court appearance' - bushy beards matched with sculpted and coiffeured hair. Ha.

Fitzroy, where I lived for many years, revealed aspects of itself I've never seen before. Hidden lanes and an old brickworks with a massive chimney. Also, a heap of Victorian warehouses and factories,  duly and predictably turned into inner-city apartments, ghost signs deliberately preserved. I took photos of them all, but this snapping lacked the sense of discovery of finding the signs unexpectedly. They were almost parodies. I wonder if developers of future new apartments will get my artist friend to paint the signs on.

And now the pix. First, Thornbury and Northcote (all in reverse order of encountering them):

Mobil sign?

Then, through North Fitzroy:

I think it said 'wallpaper'...

Almost rode right by this brilliant one, appearing like out of a fog...

Hidden away off Nicholson Street - quite the find

Cobalt blue...

And finally, the 'Roy, finishing just in time before the weather closed in again:

More cobalt blue

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