Gain x Portraits of Hope Team Up to Beautify Local Laundromats

Gain Laundromat

 

Recently, Gain (yes, as in the laundry detergent) teamed up with Bronx-born musician Leslie Grace and Portraits of Hope  to takeover and liven up laundromats in the Bronx and Washington Heights. Using bright colors and helping hands from the community, the company aims to help add a boost of happiness to the usually dreadful chore of schlepping to the laundromat to wash your clothes. I visited Clean Circle on Webster and 168th this weekend and actually WISHED that I’d brought a load with me. The artwork is plastered on washers, dryers, the walls, just about any place you look. It’s amazing what a burst of color can do to cheer you up, which is part of what Portraits of Hope does with its public art installations – inspire communities and involve them in the process of beautifying their spaces.

The way Gain figures into all of this loveliness is that this project also doubles as a promo opportunity for its new flings product which combines detergent, Oxiboost, and Febreeze all in one. Though I grew up on Tide, I will say that Gain wins all the brownie points for its amazing scent. Add in the Febreeze and the stain fighting powers of Oxiboost and you’ve got a really powerful product here. Enough rambling, I wouldn’t tell you all these wonderful things about the product without giving you a chance to try it out. I’m giving away an entire set of Gain products to ONE lucky reader to help you with your Spring Cleaning which includes:

o Mr. Clean w/ Gain

o Swiffer Dusters w/ Gain

o Gain Dryer Sheets

o Gain Flings

o Gain Fireworks

o Gain Dish Soap

o Ear buds

o $25 gift card

o Floral notepad for creative inspiration!

o Gain laundry bag

To enter, simply comment BELOW telling me what is “music to your nose.” Personally, I love the smells of fresh laundry and vanilla by Thursday, June 5, 2014!

Check out the closest transformed laundromat near you to enter Gain’s Instagram Selfie Contest by finding the Selfie Station (if you follow me on Instagram, you’ll see my lovely mug at Clean Circle’s Selfie Station) and snapping a photo using the hashtag #musictoyournose. Bronx locations can be found at:  3825 3rd Ave. 10457, 1210 Webster Ave. 10456, 275 E. 163rd St. 10451, and 938 E. 163rd St. 10459.

 

This is part of a sponsored activation with Gain. However, all opinions expressed are my own.

What I’m Reading/Giveaway!

With grad school finally wrapping up next week, it’s been hard the past few weeks (months!) to enjoy any downtime and read for fun. Luckily, the book I’m reading is mostly images!

A Love Letter to the City by Stephen Powers captures a graffiti artist turned street artist’s work in cities around Love Letter ot Citythe world such as New York (of course!), Philadelphia, Sao Paolo, and Dublin. For a look at the nuances and differences between graffiti and street art, check out Project Bronx’s latest video on the topic. 

Powers went from tagging his name by the elevated trains in Philadelphia to working with business owners and community organizations to create breathtakingly vibrant works of art that spoke to the community. In a great line from the introduction, Powers says “For all its [graffiti’s] efforts to communicate, most people don’t understand it, and if people don’t understand, they don’t take ownership, and your name gets taken down like a campaign poster in December.” This really struck me particularly after what happened to 5Ptz.I can’t claim that I spent a lot of time there, but when they took everything down, I felt it and I didn’t even have any art up there! I can’t imagine how the artists, especially those from around the world, felt.

The photographs of Powers’ work run alongside interviews with some of his colleagues and partners who helped him with the projects and wonderful anecdotes of the background stories behind the artwork and his travels.  What I like best about Powers’ work besides it brightness and the curvy shapes of the letters, are the kitschy, sweet messages themselves. Phrases like – ” I Paid the Light Bill Just to See Your Face” (Syracuse) and “All I Need is You and New Shoes” (Brooklyn) stand  boldly emblazoned on various surfaces – billboards, bridges, walls, buildings, the list goes on.

Though the Bronx is sadly not featured, our borough’s rich history of graffiti and street art and our constant exposure and familiarity make this book a fascinating read. I’ve always wanted to tag along with some graffiti artists and watch them at work and this is the next best thing. It’s amazing to see how much thought, preparation, time, effort, and planning went into all of the works featured and hearing it from Powers himself, makes everything more personal.

TWO LUCKY READERS WILL WIN A COPY OF A LOVE LETER TO THE CITY AND A SET OF 12 NOTECARDS WITH PRINTS OF POWERS’ WORK ON THEM. 

HOW TO ENTER: 

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WINNERS WILL BE CHOSEN ON FRIDAY, MAY 23, 2014

 

Disclaimer: The wonderful people at Princeton Architectural Press sent me this book to review and giveaway. I was not paid for this review and all of the opinions are, of course, my own.