Afternoon Obsession: Doors of Fairmount
A longtime tourist attraction, the doors of Dublin, likely the inspiration for local artist Allison Ostertag’s Doors of Fairmount poster, are a thing of historical myth. According to some tour guides, Queen Victoria, mourning the death of Prince Albert, ordered for all doors to be painted black. The Irish rebelled by painting theirs vibrant hues.
Less colorful is the most plausible case: residents painted their doors a variety of colors in order to distinguish their homes during a period of strict architectural uniformity. The doors of Dublin have since become a famous characteristic of the city, amassed on posters by American ad agencies since the 1970s.
Philadelphia native Allison Ostertag now rivals the classic travel poster with her Doors of Fairmount, which includes 16 of her favorite neighborhood door pairs. A Fairmount resident and former student at Moore College of Art & Design and The University of the Arts, Allison frequently photographs Philadelphia, capturing the city via its architecture and surrounding nature. Every home has a story, and Allison provides the doors through which to wonder about Fairmount’s architectural history and its people, past and present. Better yet, its people have spoken, selling out the posters twice! Those eager to grab their copy can purchase it on Etsy for $15 or purchase it from the Fairmount CDC for $20, contributing an additional $5 to their economic, ecological, or community projects. Bonus: Allison will hand-deliver posters to Fairmount or Spring Garden residents.
Whether you’re a Fairmount resident, a Philadelphia historian, or a photography lover, the poster is a simple and yet deeply rich treat.