Exhibition: The New West Enders & Other Green Monsters

Dismantling of the Lechemere El

Causeway and Staniford Streets – Dismantling of the Lechemere El

January 6 through March 21st, 2015

Reception: Thursday, January 15 at 5:30 p.m

@ The West End Museum

With images by photographer Lolita Parker, Jr., The New West Enders & Other Green Monsters documents the rapid-fire changes in Boston’s West End over the past 16 years. Set against a backdrop of Garden events, sports bars and endless construction, Parker’s wide-angle perspective ranges from the personal to the political.

Parker’s photos powerfully and beautifully capture the projects, events and people that have reshaped and reenergized the West End since 1998—from the 2004 Democratic National Convention to the lone flower merchant who has been a North Station icon for over 20 years; from the completion of the Central Artery to the demolition of the elevated MBTA tracks.

“While the screeching trains were noisy and the elevated tracks an eyesore to many, the El was a major character with a life of its own. I miss the play of light and shadow under and around the tracks,” Parker said. “When we lost that green ribbon of metal and concrete in the course of one weekend, it was like someone took the roof off the neighborhood.”

While Parker is a Californian by birth, she considers herself a “Bay Stater” by birthright, having recently traced her European ancestry to the State’s early settlers. When she first visited Boston in February 1975 in the middle of a whiteout blizzard, it somehow felt like home. But it wasn’t until 1993 that she permanently settled in the City with her three children, London, Prophet and N’Dia. A resident of the West End since 1998, Parker is proud to call herself a New West Ender and looks forward to the spring when she will join a growing group of neighborhood grandparents pushing strollers along Staniford Street.

The New West Enders & Other Green Monsters is free and open to the public during regular Museum hours.