Personal reflections on urbanism, urban life and sustainable urban design in Wellington, New Zealand.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

A Freaky place

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As Cuba Street gradually becomes slicker and more expensive, it becomes harder for new or marginal businesses to establish themselves there. Luckily, there are still side streets and tucked-away little alleys that offer cheap opportunities to start a shop. The Left Bank is one such place, and the latest example is FREAK!space, which has just opened in shop 206.

Mr Freak at FREAK!spaceI've written about Mr Freak and his productions before, and in July I mentioned his search for a venue. While I don't think I've got quite the style (or figure) to carry off his outfits, they're a great example of upcycling: turning second-hand suits into spectacular custom creations.

Exhibition at FREAK!spaceThe space will also be used for exhibitions and events, and the current exhibition offers a cheeky take on colonialism, complete with a sign reading "Blankets 4 Sale. Will trade for land, beads or guns." In fact, with Oblong and the Freedom Shop just a few doors down, this could become quite a hotbed of dissent: so much so that when I saw a couple of police officers walking through the Left Bank today I wondered for a moment whether an Abel Smith Street style of raid was on the way. The spirit of Cuba St hasn't died; it's just moved around the corner.


At 4:46 PM, October 29, 2007, Blogger Rich said...

Left Bank of what though? The subterranean Aro River?

At 5:13 PM, October 29, 2007, Blogger Tom said...

Well, there's the obviously pretentious Parisian reference, of course. But one could indeed justify it as the Left Bank of the buried Waimapihi stream, which passes near the corner of Cuba & Ghuznee and under J.J. Murphy's.


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