Photographer Julia López captures “the passage of time” in downtown St. Louis | maker







Photo by Julia Lopez


Before American architects Kevin Roche and John Dinkeloo popularized the plate glass facade in the 1950s—turning it into a de rigueur horror and in one fell swoop ray-banning the national vision of what middle-rise, high-rise, and high-rise skyscrapers should look like—multi-story buildings displayed character, composure, and considerable dignity, as suggested by Julia López’s “Passage of Time” (reproduced here).

López, a St. Louis-based photographer and videographer, created this 16 x 24 inch metal-based photograph in 2019. Its apparent image plane gazes lovingly at the horizon at dusk on Washington Avenue in the Downtown West neighborhood of St. Louis. This vantage point is evidenced by specific signage to the right: SIS/Self Inflicted Tattoos at 1328 Washington Ave., Flannery’s Irish Pub at 1324, the revered Knickerbocker neon at 1300.

Above the rain-soaked sidewalk and even the great examples of metropolitan masonry – St. Louis brick! – Strati flashes tangerine and lemon against azure in the sun’s rapidly fading rays, in a view that is at once picturesque in its beauty and poignant in its presentation of an era and an aesthetic long overtaken by St. Louis CGI CBD.

“I’ve always found the city of St. Louis to be a photogenic place with so many stories yet to be uncovered,” López says of Passage of Time. “A driving inspiration for the creation of this work, therefore, has been an interest in documenting the historical context of St. Louis’ urban and industrial spaces from my own perspective and in understanding the various stories that have played out on these sites. ”

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