Translucent Cross (East Harlem)


I like this modest, translucent cross with the blue neon border at Iglesia Cristiana, a small Pentecostal joint at E. 104 at Park Avenue in East Harlem. It’s hangs out off the built structure and over the street, right under the commuter rail tracks. Catching the eye is the simple, cheap construction and the very sophisticated see-through effect. Instead of blocking the natural view, it absorbs the surrounding and framing treescape into its own frame-configuration. An interesting way to think about “religion,” the natural environment, and urban space. I walked past it on the way to a doctor’s appointment after lunch with a friend down in the Village. Posting multiple shots vertically here at the blogsite creates the impression of descent. The translucent cross comes down to earth. I don’t think the pictures would have come out as nearly as well in the winter. These shots required spring foliage, while  the grey sky gives a nice, matted effect to its subject.

About zjb

Zachary Braiterman is Professor of Religion in the Department of Religion at Syracuse University. His specialization is modern Jewish thought and philosophical aesthetics.
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