Art or eyesore: The gum wall

I’ve made “Art or Eyesore?” a NewsCut category now because we’re getting more candidates for your voting pleasure, and it appears you get some pleasure out of your voting pleasure on this topic. In the last week, you’ve voted the Duluth children’s mural “art,” and the statue of Marilyn Monroe in Chicago “eyesore.”

So, here is today’s Art or Eyesore: In Seattle, the gum wall has become a must-see destination . It’s in an alley outside the Market Theater at Pike Place Market. Starting in the ’90s, people stuck their gum on the wall while they waited to buy tickets.


What say you? Art or eyesore?

Tonight on MPR, American Public Media’s The Story will provide the history of the Gum Wall. Or you can hear it here now.

If you have Minnesota-based “art” or “eyesore” you’d like to submit for the category, take an image, send me an email, and tell me about it.

Update An update on the Duluth mural: The Duluth Arts Commission will determine the fate of the “Unity in Community” mural that’s divided Duluth. That was decided at a meeting last evening about the mural, painted by kids and ridiculed by neighbors.

(Photo via Flickr under Creative Commons license)

  • vjacobsen

    It’s neither– it’s a landmark.

  • andy

    As a germaphobe, I see a science experiment that sends chills down my spine.

  • milojo

    Reminds me of the nastiness around Juliet’s balcony in Verona. There’s nothing romantic about a bunch of notes stuck to the wall with used gum. Yuck!

  • Jamie

    Eeewwww!! Ick!

  • Jim Shapiro

    If it’s art, with what germ-transmitting repository of bodily fluid shall we draw the line?

  • Kevin M

    I’m inclined to agree with vjacobsen on this. A cultural landmark akin to the Blarney Stone or Oscar Wilde’s tombstone in Paris. You can’t tell me putting your mouth on rocks kissed by thousands of others is any better than sticking your gum (with your fingers, not your mouth) on a wall with thousands of others. From a quirky Americana viewpoint, I’m for it.