Tuesday, March 26, 2013


"Tyson's Corner" sounds like a quaint little country crossroads, and once upon a time it was just that. But now in the 21st century Tyson's Corner has become an intensely built-up urban area of offices, residences, shopping centers, and two huge malls. It is also a showplace for bad architecture. This portrait of "Tysons Now" will be going up on the walls of my Trader Joe's, to contrast with the bucolic little crossroads of "Tysons Then." I have "collaged" and condensed the architecture so that all the memorably ugly buildings can be seen in one view. Many of these buildings have nicknames. Under the elevated roadway is the "Flashcube," a dark blue-glass cube. (Only people of a Certain Age can remember what "flashcubes" were.) To the left is the "Toilet Bowl" or "Toilet Head," with its big white "O" shape bordering a scooped-out area in the building's facade. And the brownish building to the right with the archways on top is the "Shopping Bag." I have also depicted the water tower and the communications tower which are at the top of the Tysons Corner hill. The "Shopping Bag" will have a round Trader Joe's logo superimposed on it, so that it looks like a TJ paper shopping bag. 

Acrylic and acrylic markers on Masonite board, 4 ft. x 3 ft., March 2013.

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