The Newtown Pentacle

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Posts Tagged ‘UPitt

Walking in Oakland

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– photo by Mitch Waxman

The section of Pittsburgh where you’ll find the campuses of major universities – notably University of Pittsburgh or UPITT and Carnegie Mellon (as well as hospitals and medical centers, several museums, and a gaggle of religious buildings) – is called Oakland. Oakland is divided up into distinct sections, but I’d be lying if I could tell you anything about them yet. The shots in todays post are from my literal third visit to the area since moving here, and the last time I was here it was all indoors at a museum.

The enormous 42 story building prominently occupying the shots in todays post is the UPITT campus’ Cathedral of Learning.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

I really hadn’t planned a route for this exploratory scuttle, and instead used the Cathedral as a waypoint for navigation purposes. The Mobile Oppression Platform was stowed away on the roof of a for-pay parking garage, where I paid the highest fee I’ve encountered so far in Pittsburgh for parking – $15 for about three hours. The parking garage was part of the Carnegie Mellon campus, and on the exit stairs taken back down to the street there were a set of doors that led to a set of bleachers on the Carnegie Mellon campus overlooking some sort of sports ball field which also had a running track around it.

I’m still very much in scouting mode these days, and on this particular afternoon I wanted to travel light. Didn’t even bring a camera bag. Had a spare battery and a lens cloth in my sweatshirt pocket, the 85mm f2 was on the camera and a 35mm f1.8 lens was in the coat pocket of the filthy black raincoat which I call my “street cassock.”

– photo by Mitch Waxman

I spent a couple three hours wandering around and looking at what was on offer for perusal. This sort of area, given the high profile “Ivy League” nature of its institutions, is what an archaeologist would call a “ritual center.” People want their particular “deal” to be noticed and acknowledged by the up and coming generations of cultural and political leadership in such ritual centers, so they spend big when building monuments to a spiritual path or political ideation.

There were several grandiose and architecturally distinguished religious structures in the area, some of which will be discussed tomorrow. I found the Carnegie Mellon campus area to be a bit architecturally sterile, personally, but I didn’t venture too far into it from the street side and thereby I don’t really have a fully formed opinion to offer on the subject.

More tomorrow.

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Written by Mitch Waxman

March 15, 2023 at 11:00 am

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