“Abraham Obama” Finds a Home on the Hill


Like Barack Obama's presidency itself, the installation of Ron English's wheatpaste "Abraham Obama" poster behind the Capitol Hill dog park has been a long time coming. After seeing the stir the images created in Boston, BLVD Gallery director Damion Hayes contacted English, who sent him the poster in August. Thus began a Goldilocks story of art installation.The original proposed location, the Roq La Rue Gallery in Belltown, "looked like it would be too expensive," says Hayes. "And the landlord wasn't into it—we would have needed to cover one wall with plywood." Then Belltown hair salon Vain offered the space on their wall above their graffiti mural, but that was "too unwieldy," recalls Hayes. "It's 10 feet up there and we'd have had to use a ladder."Finally, Kate Stineback of Capitol Hill Housing pointed him to the current location, the building housing the Villa Apartments and the apparel store GOODS. The Parks Department even offered the use of a scissor lift for the installation. But December snow postponed their plans, so they decided to wait until Inauguration Day, roughly five months after the poster first arrived.As Beyonce put it at the inaugural ball: at last.

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