WELCOME TO THE NEW PARADISE (RETURN)
Fulton Street, Brooklyn, New York
Sep. 10 - Dec. 10, 2009
The project opens with RETURN, a billboard crowning a building in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn. At first sight, the billboard appears to be a travel agency advertisement that attempts to lure the audience into buying an idyllic vacation package: "Welcome to the New Paradise. You, a lonely Wild Cat."
Barrio creates a melting pot of her own iconography, interconnected with elements of the exotic cultural imagery of the area, which enjoys a flourishing immigrant population, the majority of whom have left tropical settings such as the Caribbean Islands, South America and Africa, to make their home in New York City.
The area in question is bathed by exotic echoes in places like "The Sea Breeze" a club adorned by a sign with an image of a palm tree swinging in the wind, or the bursting sun logotype of "Golden Crust."