Holiday Club, 1997

Holiday-Club-1996-©2019 Michael Priorie. All Rights Reserved.

Around 1997, I went on a road trip to the West Coast. While in San Francisco, I stumbled upon an underground scene where Swing music was enjoying a revival. It was complete with clubs that played live big band music and cool kids who dressed in vintage 1940’s Zoot suits and poodle skirts. Fedoras were a must. The trend came to Chicago to places like the Holiday Club but it didn’t get a big as it was on the West Coast. That was too bad because I enjoyed getting dressed up in vintage clothes and seeing those big bands play. 

6 Corners, 1995

©2019 Michael Priorie. All Rights Reserved.

In Chicago, the area of Portage Park where the intersections of Irving Park Rd., Cicero Avenue and Milwaukee Avenue meet is traditionally known as 6 Corners. Some people out there will immediately argue and claim Milwaukee/Damen/North Avenue as 6 Corners– It is not! In my forty plus years on this earth, it’s always the area on the Northwest side of the city by where the (former site) Sears is located. This photo was taken on a foggy evening in December 1995.

Robin W.

Robin-Mural©2019 Michael Priorie. All Rights Reserved.

I thought of the name Urban Hues many years ago as a color counterpart of the Urban Views project. That title actually dates back to 1995 when I was still in college. I played around with different concepts over the years and nothing seemed to stick. Recently while looking back at my work over the past ten years, I discovered  that the images that drew me in were that of murals and graffiti art.

This mural literally made me stop in my tracks. I shot this very recently while walking down Milwaukee Avenue in Logan Square. It is colorful, it is detailed, and it is mesmerizing. If anything made you miss the laughs you got from the late Robin Williams, then this beautiful mural of him in front of his Aladdin character would do it.

Revisited

Statues-Revisted©2019 Michael Priorie. All Rights Reserved.

In my ‘About Me’ section, a photo of the Oak Park World War I Memorial graces the top of the page. I took that shot way back in 1993 as part of my first photo class assignment. The goal was to shoot an entire roll of Tri-X film on just one subject.

Flash forward to 2019 and here we are again. This time it was to put my new DSLR ( a Canon 6D Mark II with a 20mm fixed lens for those who would like to know) to the test. Funny how things come full circle?

 

The Fish Keg, 1998

Fish-Keg-1998-©2019 Michael A. Priorie. All Rights Reserved.

During the summer of 1998, I was on this kick of photographing neon signs. I was out riding around with my friend Pat one evening when this caught my eye. The Fish Keg is located on Howard Street in the Chicago neighborhood of Rogers Park. It is at the city’s northern limits. It’s still around– same sign and everything. Its one of the few places in the city that you can buy seafood from an independent retailer.

Caffe Pergolesi, 1998

Cafe-Pergolesi-1998-©2019 Michael A. Priorie.  All Rights Reserved.

At one time in Chicago, Caffe Pergolesi and No Exit were the oldest coffeehouses in Chicago. They were both in existence since the 1960’s. At the time of this photo (1998), Pergolesi saw the North Halsted neighborhood emerge from working class to the center of Chicago’s LGBTQ community. It was a one of a kind place, kind of dark and cozy. A good place to read a book and sip on a cappuccino. There was a while where it seemed like Starbucks had taken everything over, but luckily, some indie coffeehouses have begun to reemerge.