About the Book
"This book is dedicated to Pat Carey, distinguished artist, activist and once owner of The Nanny Goat Art Gallery on Bush Street.
She was a tireless Mother Teresa to the runaway teens who inhabited Polk Gulch in the 1980's (some of whom are pictured in this book), which ultimately led to the establishment of San Francisco's Larkin Street Youth Center."
Before the Castro District in San Francisco California achieved fame as a gay playground, Polk Gulch, the area of Polk Street between California Street and Geary was known for its gay bars, raucous Halloween parades. elegant Shops, restaurants and sadly the young male prostitutes and drug addicts. The neighborhood was also home to a large number of elderly, minorities, and a small colony of former North Beach bohemians.
This book is a photographic record of Polk Gulch as it was in 1980.
Johnny Lee Ray, San Francisco Bay Guardian Arts and Entertainment editor says......
"...a rave for Blaine Dixon's Polk Gulch...", "Blaine's black-and-white eye is a West Coast counterpart to the Times Square views of Larry Clark and Gary Lee Boas,.. "the book's final contemporary color section is packed with wise irony.", "Polk Gulch proves small publishing is still spirited, intelligent, and surprising."
Roberto Friedman, Arts Editor of San Francisco's Bay Area Reporter, says, " 'Polk Gulch' a collection of photographs by Blaine Dixon, is a look into a time and place...Polk Street circa 1980...the vintage storefronts and the habitués who loitered there are presented in glorious black and white."
Donn Saylor, theater writer for the Boston Examiner, critic for The Edge and owner of snark.com says...
"There are some intensely emotional pieces of work here, mesmerizing freeze-frame commentaries on society, art, and sexuality."
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Features & Details
- Category Arts & Photography
Standard Landscape, 10×8 in, 25×20 cm
- Publish Date Feb 09, 2009
- Tags the 80s, gay bars, drug addicts, male prostitutes, gay rights, homeless children, Larkin Street Youth center, North Beach Bohemians, San Francisco, Polk Street, halloween, Kimos, hustlers, gay, elderly
Born in Arkansas, raised in Oklahoma, headed west to California in 1966. Attended L. A. City College TV Production and theater history, Columbia School of Broadcasting, photography at the Art Center College of Design, inspired by photojournalist Ken Light in his photojournalism class at the Academy of Art, San Francisco.I worked as photographer and audio visual specialist in the advertising department of The Bank of California in San Francisco. I freelanced for the SF Bay Guardian, The San Francisco Chronicle, The San Francisco Examiner. I have shown my work at the Nanny Goat Hill Gallery and the Eye gallery in San Francisco. Some have asked me about my blurb "handle" as "Vercingtorix". This came about when I opened an account at Blurb and I found every handle I selected was already taken, frustrated I thought of a handle that no one had taken, that of the Celtic Chieftain in Gaul who led a rebellion against Julius Caesar.