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Suburbia: Educate yourselves (about yourselves!)

August 5, 2010

We’ve been told (on more than one occasion) that we’re a bit too harsh on the suburbs¹.

To that we would say: “Alright, you got us!”

But, see, it’s not like that OK. Don’t hang up yet. See, we’re not harsh because we’re hopeless. And we’re not harsh because we believe that all the art that’s made public in the ‘burbs is horrible². We’re harsh because we care. And if we didn’t care, see, we’d probably all up-and-leave for the big city.

I mean, you’ve heard us talk about how boring and drab it is here, but we don’t think that’s entirely true³: we only say it because we know there are people here who agree with that statement, and because it’s easy to see why people would think that. Of course, there are obvious problems with suburbia: cookie-cutter housing that makes it almost impossible to walk to a communal space, stores/restaurants are 90% corporate – 4% locally-owned – 6% foreclosed, the only art store is Michaels, the only book stores are Borders and B&N, who the heck are my neighbors (“I don’t know them and I’ve been living here for years!”), and what the hell’s a “record store,” huh?

That said, I think it’s appropriate to pull the curtain off some of our inspiration for this movement. There are people that have influenced, and will continue to influence us, to keep doing what we’re doing and – in order for you to understand the suburbs as we see them – we think it’s worth giving you the resources necessary to correctly understand the problem.

Here are a couple TED talks you can check out to get you started:

We’ll have more resources for you in the very near future. Until then… Think about it.

¹Please see “Addressing criticism of Proxart (part 1)” for my response to said critique.
² It’s not all bad. But if we had to give you a statistic, we’d say that approximately 71.984% of it is pretty dern horrible.
⁴ If you think we’re mean, just listen to one of Mr. Kunstler’s opening statements: “These are places that are not worth caring about.” Geeeeez… I mean, c’mon!


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