Tuesday, 23 June 2020

IAG sign on tower two, Darling Park, Sydney

Consciousness is a filter automatically applied to sensory perception. The “socius” of postmodern theory is the layered physical ground upon which ideas are inscribed.

Or, as with this IAG (an insurance firm) sign on tower two of Darling Park – a development on Sussex Street, in Sydney – forming a palimpsest. Beforehand there was a sign for the professional services firm PWC, and when the designers ordered the signs to be changed out they were unable to match the exact shade of grey to obliterate traces of the previous occupant of this piece of marketing real estate. So you can still see how the one firm was pushed out by workmen handling the big letters of the second firm.

Sussex and Darling – the former being the name of a duke and the latter of a governor – belonging to the colonial era that preceded the one we now inhabit. Now, we give our principal institutions acronyms as names instead of noble monikers.

In the photo the remnants of the morning’s fog being burned away by the winter sun might remind the viewer of a Roman god devouring a human, like Goya’s ‘Saturn Devouring his Son’ (1823), a detail of which I saw on Twitter as I was editing this post. The crane at the top of the photo is installed on a different building, not the one I’m talking about in this post. Saturn was the god of renewal and dissolution and his symbol is the scythe; it’s fitting, then, that the tops of the buildings in this image are shaped like sickles.

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