August 22, 2008
Buildings and Their Not-So-Secret Identities
The Walker Art Center recently concluded a spectacular exhibit called “Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes” (they’ve helpfully catalogued the whole exhibit in a wiki; oh Walker, how I love you). Among the highlights of the exhibit was this photo collection by Paho Mann, images of former Circle K convenience stores that have been transformed into other types of businesses — tattoo parlors, Mexican restaurants, tuxedo rental places — all taken from the same distance in similar light, all bearing the Circle K’s suprisingly distinct form. (Also available as a Google Maps mashup, natch.)
I mentioned this to an architect friend, and he pointed me to the delightful NotFoolingAnybody.com: “a chronicle of bad conversions and storefronts past” — photos of former chain restaurants lightly altered to house new businesses. (Such as “China Hut,” the bastard offspring of — what else? — Pizza Hut.)
OMG I love the Web sometimes.