Wednesday, December 4, 2019

A farewell on Ellicott Street

As I wrote on Facebook today, I love sketching around Buffalo because I like to celebrate what we have. It makes me so sad when something I've drawn passes into history.

Today downtown I saw that this old building on Ellicott Street was destroyed. My friend Meghan and I were going from St. Michael's to Starbucks to sketch and we thought at first it was a fire. But we have since learned it was an emergency demolition because of neglect. The landlord had neglected this building and the roof began to cave in.

This is the sweet building with the peaked roof on the right in the sketch I did standing on the sidewalk last summer, of the block with Maureen's Flowers.

Darn it all! That is what I wrote on Facebook and one friend complimented me on my resistance to bad language.

Now I am officially like Charles Burchfield and his "Rainy Night" building. The buildings next to the main corner "Rainy Night" building are gone but they live on in his picture.

This building lives on in mine.

It is bittersweet because now, looking at the picture, it is like seeing a ghost. I remember that beautiful summer day I drew the sketch, from the sidewalk across the street. When you look at the sketch now I see that the building that came down today, the picture would not work without it. That roof added height and variety. And I admired the roof. I got in the little details that made it so cute.

We are all railing about this on Facebook and another point I made on a friend's page is that to make matters worse it is on a prominent downtown street. There is a gap now that cannot be filled.

Our friend the photographer Phil Pantano took that picture of the loss. Horrible. He ran it side by side with the sketch. I will not do that because No. 1 it is heartbreaking and No. 2 I do not have the technical know-how.

Buffalo! I love the place but sometimes....

Can you stand it?

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