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Eraserhood’s Goldtex Building Pays Homage to Its Abandoned/Graffitied Past, Supports Artists in the Process

February 2, 2015


If you read this blog with any frequency, you probably know that I do a good deal of exploring abandoned spaces in and around Philly. And Philly, for better or worse, is home to seemingly countless spaces left abandoned by the previous century’s industry and mass exodus (which now seems to be in reverse) of people moving from the city to the suburbs.

When walking through these spaces, I always try to imagine what they were, what they could be, and what they might actually become one day: from Graffiti Pier (which I actually argue should be left alone), to Fishtown’s Power Plant (which I dream of becoming a Tate-style modern art museum), to the Bok School in South Philly (which looks as though it may very well become artists working spaces.)

As the city continues to grow, abandoned spaces will naturally become more appetizing to developers. And the Goldtex Building in the Eraserhood is a prime example of the opportunity to restore and renovate the city’s aging, abandoned architecture. (This, of course, as opposed to tearing our history down.) I think that the more spaces like this that we can help to find new uses for, the better. For one, there’s a growing need for space, and if the options are to either tear down abandoned structures or reuse them, I vote for the latter. Secondly, these buildings help to add an undeniable Philly flavor to our streets and neighborhoods.

One of the more particularly interesting/exciting things about Goldtex is that throughout the building they pay homage to its past and to the graffiti artists who were among the few to use the space while it was left abandoned, leaving exposed pillars and beams to show some of the original graffiti. As well, the developers hired Philly’s own ESPO (Steve Powers) to paint murals throughout the building. Other street artists/graff writers works are on rotating display on the first floor.

I know that we won’t be able to save and/or find new purposes for every abandoned space, but when we can I think we should. And when we do, I encourage more developers to hire artists, graffiti writers, and muralists to do work in their spaces.

Check out some photos of the building before renovation below…

GTGoldtexPenthouse_07 2Penthouse_06


Find more explorations into Abandoned Philadelphia HERE!

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