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On and On Broadway


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By ECAL Master Type Design Class and Other Means

The early New Yorkers already knew that they were not building a Rome and that the thoroughfares themselves would be their monument. Of all streets, the oldest was Broadway... consistently the chief of streets throughout New York's history.
—Luc Sante, Low Life: Lures and Snares of Old New York

The ordinary practitioners of the city live “down below,” below the thresholds at which visibility begins. They walk—an elementary form of this experience of the city—following the thicks and thins of an urban “text” they write without being able to read it.
— Michel de Certeau, The Practice of Everyday Life

New York, New York, a city so nice they had to name it twice.
— George Russell, Manhattan

Broadway is a metonym: a figure of speech used when a thing or idea is called by the name of something closely associated with it. Broadway is both a street running the entire length of Manhattan, and the name of the city's theater district. To be On Broadway is to be part of the spectacle. To be Off Broadway is to be in the shadow of the bright lights. And to be Off-Off Broadway means you are out of the spotlight. These terms refer to theaters and performances, but could just as well describe the neighborhoods Broadway connects along its thirteen mile stretch.

A metonym is a sign that stands in for a network of ideas and things. Broadway is a street of signs: commercial advertising, official messages, building numbers, restrictions and warnings, and an overwhelming amount of communication coming from the vehicles passing by on the street.

On the morning of September 11, 2017, Other Means (Gary Fogelson, Phil Lubliner, and Ryan Waller) and ten ECAL students met in Fort Tryon park at the top of Manhattan and began a walk down Broadway, ending about eight hours later at Bowling Green. Along the way they collected material that was then translated and edited into this publication.

Published in 2017
Printed in a limited edition of 250 copies

Softcover, 32 pages, stapled binding, perforated postcard pages, 8 × 10 inches