Thursday, April 25, 2013

Look up and see...

(yes, I know I am far too fond of the three little dots...)

I do like buildings.  Amongst a heap of other things, but this post is about buildings.  Specifically, commercial buildings from above your head.  Okay, that may not have made a great deal of sense.

Most people don't look up.  It's everything at eye level and down to the ground.  This is particularly so when it comes to commercial buildings and is really noticeable in country towns.  Shopfronts are constantly being tarted up, but the awning ceilings are normally forgotten, and everything above street level.  Which can mean a rather startling juxtaposition between the two when you look up.

Over the years, I've taken photos of tin ceilings, of shop fronts that show their history or haven't been altered at all (and those are few and far between), and quite a lot of whole buildings, upper storeys, or particular decorations.

The major department store in Canberra's centre, Civic, is David Jones.  It's housed in the Monaro Mall, which was built in 1963 and has since been extended and altered out of recognition.  But the point of all this - the principal entrance for DJ's is the full height of the building, and the ceiling has a rather delicate and lovely tiled mosaic by Frank Hinder. I wonder how many people know it's there?

Somewhat irrationally, I tend to loathe old shopfronts that have been restored and have lost the patina of their history.  I appreciate they have been stabilised, have a new lease of life, but still.

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