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Beau Stanton’s Paulaner Wheelhouse Facade

Beau Stanton‘s piece for Manhattan goes beyond the mural, and is instead the entire facade of the new Paulaner beer hall on The Bowery. An artwork in conjunction with the L.I.S.A. Project, the piece infuses an abstraction of hops and barley with Stanton’s signature Victorian letterpress style, but also references a particularly grim event that surrounded the area. The center of the piece portrays the wheelhouse from the ill-fated ship, the PS General Slocum, which scandalously sank in 1904, bringing a large portion of New York City’s German population with it. On June 15 of that year, the ship tragically sank, killing 1,021 of the 1,342 on board- ranking as New York’s worst disaster in terms of loss of life – only after the September 11th attacks.

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One fine summer day, members of St. Mark’s Evangelical Lutheran Church and 1,000 or so of their closest friends left Little Germany (which was the East Village/Bowery area) and embarked on a trip headed for an idyllic picnic place called Locust Grove on Long Island. A small fire in the engine room spiraled into a chain of unbelievable events. Oily rags and straw that were strewn all around the engine room quickly ignited, creating a massive fire that spread to an inexplicable locker full of flammable liquids and a room filled with canisters of gasoline. As if that wasn’t ridiculous enough for a passenger ship, when frantic passengers- mostly women and children of course, began trying to exit via the  lifeboats, they found the boats were tied up and wired, completely useless and inaccessible. Fire hoses were found totally rotted through, and the crew had never had a fire drill, so had no idea what to do. So panicked mothers began putting life preservers on their children, only to throw them overboard and watch them sink. Rather than being stuffed with cork that makes them float, the life preservers were bought from a fraudulent company that filled them with IRON BARS to meet weight requirements. So down they went. As if this weren’t enough, the captain kept sailing ahead instead of pulling the ship to the shore, which in effect fanned the fire to incapsulate the entire vessel.

Beau Stanton_Paulaner_LISA Project NYC-253

So yea, lets drink a Paulaner beer, and pour one out for our German homies.

Who: Beau Stanton

What: PS General Slocum Mural

Where: Paulaner NYC, 265 Bowery

Thanks to Rey Rosa for the images!

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