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I made this drawing for conic sections.

The Futurebird[1] is a graduate student in pure mathematics[2] and artist[3] from Ohio[4] living in the South Bronx.

The urban naturalist[edit]

Graffiti are the glowing embers of civic energy!

Burnt-out buildings, dreary overpasses, the rust-stained walls of desolate parks, underground passageways, tunnels, cement walls, cracked sidewalks, boarded up shop windows, rail yards, the least loved and least visited subway terminals: all of these places collect the lively scripts of graffiti. Like hieroglyphic weeds the names of the artists call out in bright and surprising colors. On the darkest city blocks[5] it may be the only color in sight. When the adults, the authorities and the city government have all abandon these places graffiti flourish and sing out defiant responses: This place is not forgotten, not by everyone. Not by me. I am still here. I live.

Graffiti are the glowing embers of civic energy, signs that in the gray places rebirth is still possible. Because it is not for money, but for glory, not for dollars but for the art that people risk arrest and, at their own expense, create public artworks that cover every unloved surface in the city.

Of course, anything in excess may become a nuisance[6]. And a graffito[7] would be a mere mural if there was not that constant battle between the unbridled creative energy of the people and the forces of law and order.

We can, at least, learn to see graffiti in a new light. Not as a tragedy of blight, but as a sign that life is still glimmering in the ashes of the burnt out regions of our wounded cities from which the civic spirit might yet rise again. (From The Urban Naturalist[8].)


My photograph of the Freedom Tunnel.
  1. ^ Online since 1998, but here at wikipedia only a year or two.
  2. ^ Grad school... woo hooo!
  3. ^ Examples of my artworks.
  4. ^ Shaker Heights
  5. ^ I saw these blocks in Cleveland when I was young.
  6. ^ Such as, for example, footnotes.
  7. ^ This is the singular.
  8. ^ The Urban Naturalist by Susan Murray, work in progress.

See also[edit]



Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
Here's a barnstar to cheer you up. For all your excellent work. Keep it up!! Alun 06:25, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

Society barnstar 2.png The Society Barnstar
I think it's high time you got this, for starting WP:AFRO. Abeg92contribs 22:58, 23 March 2007 (UTC)


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WikiProject Mathematics.