Painting of Deansgate in Manchester by artist Cathy Read featuring new Tower blocks, cars and railway bridge

Deansgate Painting – Musing on a Dark City

Urban Romance

Cities have romantic charm at night. The dark shadows in low light hide the flaws painfully obvious in the harsh light of day. In this Deansgate painting, the coloured lights seem like fairy lights on a Christmas tree. Shadows merge shapes, and the imagination can often offer interesting and unnerving interpretations, of what these can be.

Atmosphere

Dark alleys can be dangerous places, although the fear is usually much worse than reality. It pays to be cautious though, in case there is something unfriendly lurking in the shadows.

The transformation of Deansgate at night is no exception, with the railway bridge spanning the whole width of the road, patterns picked out with masking fluid in the pale cream, lend a comforting warmth to the scene.

Looming

Above the Bridge, tower new apartment blocks, with fabulous views of the landscape silhouetted against the dusk sky. Some lights are on but not everyone is in. There is a lone street light off centre which is ironically dark. A black slender shape outlined in white, failing in its duty to illuminate the scene. There are plenty of other working lights though, so I doubt the people travelling along Deansgate are even aware of this dysfunctional street furniture.

Deansgate Painting a Castle

Deansgate painting is filled with cars waiting at the traffic lights. In the foreground, a black car melts into the road. Surrounding cars appear more solid. Glowing lights shine under the Bridge, with another car blazing brightly. Dark colours mingle not so much seeking attention as competing to hide. So effective are they, that you hardly notice a figure crossing the side road. Or the crenellations and turrets on the railway bridge, like a fortress entrance. Behind is the Keep looms large. Or should I say Keeps?  Well this is Deansgate. Maybe that’s what it is? After all, every man’s home is his castle.

Painting of Deansgate in Manchester by artist Cathy Read featuring new Tower blocks, cars and railway bridge

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