There is so much creativity in New Orleans it permeates every element of daily life. From electricity pole a block from the inn which someone has wrapped colored Mardi Gras beads all around so it glitters in the afternoon sunlight in a rainbow of colors catching your eyes while you wait for the street car, to the banged up computer desk sitting on the curb waiting for the trashman which someone has painted with a spray can to look like an apartment house complete with window boxes to the Chocolate Bar lounge which has the wildest graffiti along its side in which a cubist dragon appears to be eating the used tire store which is located next door. Art everywhere if you just look around.
Our friend King Charles Barkely (pictured here) is a master hat maker and he fashions his creations out of brown shopping bags, palm fronds, mesh Christmas tree garland and of course feathers and rhinestones. I watched a group of women dance to the Charleston last weekend and they wore home made costumes and head band of white fringe and ostrich feathers. As they danced everything shimmered in this ice cycle blue/white flash it was just amazing and actually had a cooling effect cutting the heat and humidity.
To live in a community where one man’s trash is an others art supplies and they take these pieces and create before y0ur eyes blurs the lines between ‘everyday space’ and art space’ as everything becomes a form of artspace. It allows you look at random objects with an eye towards creativity. As you hear the far off blare of a trombone and look at how the light is captured between the leaves of the trees, glinting off a sparkle which someone has left behind on the sidewalk an organic mosaic begins to form. While I cannot personally make that transformation from everyday object to beautiful art I am grateful almost everyday that I live somewhere where many people can and do make magic on a daily basis.