Out of Reach – The Krog Street Tunnel – Atlanta Art
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This print is of the Krog Street Tunnel. It was one of those sites in Atlanta that I would say was at least well known in some circles. It was an ever changing underworld art gallery. Although more literally, it was an underpass beneath the railroad tracks near Atlanta’s Cabbagetown, an old mill village. As such, this would be a familiar scene to many from around Cabbagetown and Little Five points in Atlanta.
As you can tell, the walls of the tunnel are a constant evolution. New messages and murals cover the old. One person’s statements make way for the next. I’m not sure how the majority of residents in the area felt but for me, the walls of an old underpass versus say someone’s home or business is the difference between unwanted graffiti and underground art.
I passed through this are during the years I lived in-town, but I only made the one photographic foray there. But it always intrigued me that my image from the Krog Street Tunnel would pretty much never match another. A day, a week, a month later, the walls, like a temporary gallery, would have completely changed. If I had stayed in the area, I’ve no doubt me and my camera would have wandered into that subterranean space again.
In addition to the graffiti, the lighting down there was pretty unusual, passing from the artificially-lit middle of the tunnel to the bright light of day, which was what I was working with in this picture. I love how the dimly lit tunnel allowed for long exposure trails from the cars passing through. Those red streaks are tail-lights of phantom cars. And in the distance, this great light. The light at the end of the tunnel? In some ways it reminds me of that bright light people who have near-death experiences report. What lies beyond is unknowable for now.
This view of the Krog Street Tunnel is definitely one of those art prints that’s open to multiple interpretations, and I leave that up to the viewer ultimately. It’s yours to decide whether this is a snippet of life in Atlanta’s in-town neighborhoods or something much deeper.