Friday, October 23, 2009

Downtown Greensboro: The Arts District

Welcome to another exciting edition of my blog journeys! Today, we continue our journey into downtown, but this time, we focus on one special district, the Artistic District. This is the area where the arts hold a main portion of the area. We will begin in the Central Park.

Center City Park is a more recent addition to the city of Greensboro. It is a tribute to the arts through the artistic pieces placed throughout the area. We have, on the right picture, a vase of sorts and a building with bronze plaques of donators (and the restrooms...haha). Now, there's a mystery here. The area where the park is had many buildings there. Why did they need to have this empty space for arts? Well, I believe that the area of downtown was developing so quickly that there was no space around for miles. Kids in the area worried more about work and left behind the aspects of nature and art. The people saw this and thought about saving a spot for those aspects. So, I see this park as a way to restore and uphold the aspects of art and nature.

Another area we went to is the Cultural Center. The Cultural Center is actually a cross from the New Library back to the Central Park. Along the way, there are areas where there are offices for the performing arts groups and meeting places. Also, as you can see, there are artistic pieces placed all over the area. Now, this building speaks out to the issues of the lack of art in downtown. The issue is that this is one of the only areas where the arts are openly displayed. The access of the arts are slightly limited because of the areas of businesses around. So, there's no space for artistic designs out in the open. Instead, there's only the "avenue" and the alleyways from last time. So, the Cultural Center is a key stand out to the arts and the lack of space for it.

Next was the Central Library. This library is actually a newer library built by the Historic Museum. The Library is one of the big areas here in downtown. The biggest symbol here is the dome in this picture. This dome symbolizes, what I believe, is open opportunities. The sky is the limit for education and the arts. The hole in the middle, I believe, represents that education and the arts will always poke through the stone of the norm and technical style.

The Historical Museum is a place where the history of Greensboro is shown. It started as a Presbyterian Church, then became a auditorium, a hospital (right picture), and finally a museum. Now, why did they re-use the church to make a museum? My idea is that why build a new building for a museum when you can put history in history? Also, space is another key to the equation. Still, the history is what the area was trying to recover from the trouble of multiplying businesses. History is another of the arts that was fading away and the people wanted to keep despite the growing presence of business.

Finally, we stop by the Old Public Library. This area was the old library, but was closed because of a new school for Elon University, the School of Law. As you can see, there is a atmosphere of quietness and tranquility. The other building has more of an artistic style while this area has more of a bankish style where the normal is there. This area does fit more of the law style and courtrooms. Now, this area seems more of a conference area than a library. The spacing of the rooms are not very huge and it's more of a place of work. The newer library is wide-open and the arts reassure the use of books and imagination. It's a great spot for reading and artistic ability.
In the end, I believe each of the buildings meet the streets in a crazy way each time. The museum has a fence, the Cultural Center has a mini-park with art, and the Library actually meets the street but doesn't blend in with every building. Now, there are little companies around the areas like car dealerships and factories. I believe that these areas symbolize the times where businesses were dominant in the area, but the arts have taken over and businesses have to adapt to this.
Thanks once again for reading! Leave as much feedback as you can!

1 comment:

  1. so what of the different generations of the city. is one more important than others? is it okay for an arts district to replace what was a business area? how do you account for the many layers of a community over time?