Neon Eulogy: Vancouver Café and Street

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9781896860923: Neon Eulogy: Vancouver Café and Street

Keith McKellar’s riveting line drawings of the disappearing neon of Vancouver, BC, accompanied by jazz riff tales of the street are from a new collection by the artist Laughing Hand. Neon Eulogy: Vancouver Café and Street contains McKellar’s expressionist portraits of famous cafes, theatres––the characters and the street. For the last sixteen years street artist Laughing Hand has been quietly capturing Vancouver’s dives and haunts, through the metaphor of neon and its days of glory, documenting the demise of its crumbling antiques. The Ovaltine Café, the Aristocratic, the Ho Ho, the Orpheum, the Stanley, the Only, the Smiling Buddha, the Yale – these landmarks and their heritage neon are a window into our culture. The stories are anecdotal hearsays––tossed scraps of found memory, tacked together in, off the wall, historical gossips. A poignant and wildly entertaining social comment from the journals of a bohemian sleuth, Neon Eulogy: Vancouver Café and Street is a startling glimpse of Canadian cultural heritage.

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About the Author:

Ex-cabbie turned street artist, working from a push-cart wagon, composing on location, Laughing Hand is the alter-ego of artist Keith McKellar. McKellar grew up in Prince George, BC. More recently his travels, as a street artist for eighteen years, have taken him on urban vagabond walking journeys in North America and in Asia. McKellar’s writings and drawings appear in Canadian magazines and newspapers. His first collection Line-Poem Drawings, was published by Ekstasis Editions in 1983. His drawings of neon landmarks were part of the City of Lights vintage neon show at the Vancouver Museum in 1999. Keith McKellar divides his time between Vancouver and Victoria, BC.

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