This taco stand popped up at the biannual Echo Park Craft Fair in Silver Lake this past weekend. It seems you can’t drive a block in Los Angeles wihtout seeing either a small taco joint, truck, take-out window or improvised stand. But this one is unique in a couple of ways, most notably in its architecture and construction. The do-it-yourself quality to the construction and use of materials is clever. Long wood boards have been slotted into the gaps in a stack of wood pallets. These pallets form columns and the boards function as shelves and a counter. The menu items are written in chalk on the side of the pallets. White fabric has been thrown over the contruction to form a roof. Then there is the decor. There’s a Tibetan Buddhist-style string of colorful flags strung along the top of the stand. Woven Mexican bowls on the columns add color. Potted plants accent the facade and rest on heavy wood blocks that help support the columns. It’s brilliant, though one wonders how structurally sound it is and whether it’s “up to code,” as they say.
The Domino Sugar Factory in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, ceased operations years ago, but the massive building and it’s iconic logo-sign near the East River are something of a New York City landmark. In fact the refinery has been officially recognized as an historic landmark by the city. The factory is undergoing a long process of renovation that will change it into shiny, new mixed-use property filled mostly with condos and office space. That vision involves demolishing some of the building. A group of activists have been fighting for years to save the more of the property as an historic landmark. To that end, this DIY “Save Domino” sign made from string-lights was put on the side of an apartment building near South 3rd St in 2007. The red-lighted message has become a kind of neighborhood meta-landmark of its own. There’s a great short video of what the factory looked like inside before renovation started..
Pictured below is the entrance to the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin building, or Berlin State Library, in the German capital. The building is a sprawling piece of post-war architectural modernism by architects Hans Scharoun and Edgar Wisniewski. It’s an architectural landmark that’s a bit under-appreciated compared to Berlin’s other, more famous and iconic structures. The library is aging — some parts not as handsomely as others — and thus undergoing some renovation, as the photos attest. The massive library is captured beautifully on film as one of the principal settings of German director Wim Wenders’ classic 1980s movie “Wings of Desire.” See film clip below.