Key Similarity Both sites are used as forms of advertisement. The Left Bank mural promoted the 2015 Wellington On a Plate festival, and now promotes the cultural diversity and culinary creativity of Wellington City and its inhabitants.
Slow Boat Records promotes itself, and the products it sells; records, cds, tapes, posters, and other musical merchandise. The t-shirts of people passing in and around Slow Boat Records are also promotional; the bands or brands the wearer of the shirt chooses to endorse are promoted to the rest of the general public who view the shirt.
Key Difference The key difference between the two sites is their establishment.
The Left Bank graffiti wall was constructed on an already existing site. It was painted just last year on a wall that had already been standing; a wall which was not built for the sole purpose of being the canvas on which to paint the mural, but was built for the purpose of simply being a wall. The Visa Wellington On a Plate mural was added to a construction that already existed as a stand-alone subject, therefore transforming it into a new subject and giving it a whole different meaning.
Slow Boat Records differs from the Left Bank graffiti wall in that it is a long-established building and was constructed specifically for the purpose it currently serves. The entire building is a record store. It was built to be a record store in 1989 ago, and has remained so for 27 years. It itself is a stand-alone subject, not a modification of a stand-alone subject.
The t-shirts of the pedestrians and customers of Slow Boat Records are much the same as the store. Each t-shirt is an individual product, made specifically for the buyer who consciously chose to buy and wear that t-shirt. The shirts are not modified versions of other products – they are stand-alone pieces.
Slow Boat Records is a long stretch of a store set in a slight alcove halfway down Cuba Street – number 183, to be exact. Its outer walls are bedecked with musical posters and paraphernalia, and faded yellow signage announces its name and purpose; SLOW BOAT RECORDS. BUY SELL TRADE; RECORDS, COMPACT DISCS, TAPES.
The blazing red emblem – a junk ship silhouetted against a half-set sun – is what allows pedestrians who spare Slow Boat a passing glance to connect with what the store has to offer. It exists primarily to make available the music that was at its prime prior to the store’s establishment in 1989, the kind of music that has become hard to find online or in chain stores. Slow Boat Records allows its customers to take home their own little piece of the past in the form of audio.
Cardboard cutouts that dangle in the window of David Bowie and Elvis in their signature get-ups reflect the styles of people passing by and through the store. Men in sleek business suits who have jumped on the hipster-combover hairstyle bandwagon resemble modernised Presley’s, while more daring expressionists with made-up faces and bizarrely printed shirts reflect Ziggy Stardust’s style.
Some choose to portray their musical appreciation in a subtler manner; people in well loved t-shirts with faded band logos can be seen frequently milling in and around Slow Boat – staff included.
Stacks of records and CD’s sprinkled with dust garnered from the storage rooms out back fill the maze of shelves inside. The unobtrusive lighting and constant beat of background music creates a calming and welcoming atmosphere. Ultimately, the store is a place for lovers of song to come together and celebrate their collective tastes. It is a safe haven in which to relax and meet others to whom you can relate and connect and, most importantly, to find and rediscover the music you know and love.