Kenny Be's Yard Arteology: Inside out in Goldsmith

The study of neighbors through their lawn ornaments...

Figure 35: Goldsmith. Crafty thrifter turns table lamps into landscaping lights

Goldsmith is a neighborhood that is easy to miss. East Evans, South Quebec, East Yale and Interstate 25 define the borders of this Southeast Denver neighborhood that is bisected by the Highline Canal and checkered with whole streets of unincorporated Arapahoe County renegades who refuse Denver annexation. Goldsmith's most distinguishing feature is that it is completely featureless. This is the suburban anyplace where American dreams seek shelter from life's uncertainties. Great pains are taken on the small comforts of a spotless driveway and a newly mowed lawn. Yard art is mostly the discount-garden-center variety with an occasional nod to Hobby Lobby. Personal flourishes stick out like a sore thumb.

The home pictured in figure 35 stuck out immediately for daring to turn tacky table lamps into Grecian landscape lighting. The placement of the table lamps intimates that they were spotted at a garage sale and immediately loved for being too ugly to have indoors, but too beautiful not to have at all. The brass assembly and wiring required in the four-piece light grouping indicate that this is the home of a retiree with little interest in boating, camping or golfing. The bronze and turquoise paint job hint at immediately available spray paint colors. That the lights are all placed at waist level suggests a yard artist who wants his skillful handling of rock and brick design to be noticed.

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Kenny Be
Contact: Kenny Be