The Secret Lives of Colors

The Secret Lives of Colors
The Secret Lives of Colors
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The RVA Street Art Festival takes place Sept. 11-15, with dozens of local, national and international artists taking over the old GRTC bus depot on Cary Street to turn it into a creative hotspot for vibrant murals, provocative sculpture and interesting mixed media.


Like last year’s inaugural event, which gussied up the Richmond floodwall, the Street Art Festival is designed to bring eye-grabbing hues to a part of Richmond that needs some serious prettying up. But how well do we really know these colors being used for economic development and aesthetic delight? What are they really all about? Where are their people from? And did you know each and every one of these colors — primary as well as secondary — has a dark side?


On this installment of The Sevens, we give you the brush off. Uncensored and unexpurgated, here are The Secret Lives of Colors.


1. Red

Red comes across like a blustery bully at times, but it has a tender side that it uses to pick up chicks. The constant center of attention, Red never lets you forget that it is the color of blood AND strawberries. Says it doesn’t believe in astrology, but checks the horoscope every day. Caution: Do not sit Red next to its despised color wheel neighbor Orange at dinner parties. You’ll be sorry and garish at the same time.


2. Yellow

The classic passive-aggressive type, Yellow knows that it goes well with everything and never stops talking about it. Catches colds easily and has a long memory for slights. Loves to join secret societies and may be the only psychic color. Trivia: Yellow once played Blanche in a critically-acclaimed production of “A Streetcar Named Desire.” Surprisingly courageous.


3. Blue

Will Blue ever make up its mind? The most soulful and expressive of the colors, not to mention the most popular, it can never quite figure out what shade it wants to be. A relative latecomer to the color scene, it is anxious to settle the whole “Indigo vs. Woad” thing once and for all. Blue is good at water sports and counts skydiving and harmonica playing among its many, many hobbies.


4. Green:

What a piece of work. Green is a reckless romantic with commitment issues. Not trustworthy – it’s the kind of color that talks trash before a doubles tennis game and then limps off the court with a strained calf after 15 minutes. Envious, as you would expect, but (are you ready for this) not really 100% organic. Annoying too – Green is always flashing a big wad of bills in your face but rarely picks up the dinner check.


5. Orange

It’s the new Black, according to a trendy new book, but don’t be fooled. It’s the same old Orange – boorish, high maintenance and never appropriately dressed. In a fight, Black would surely crush this goofy, nappy-headed color like a grapefruit. Orange is also constantly whining about how Halloween has ruined its life. Feel free to roll your eyes.


6. Pink

Pink isn’t a primary color but you’d never know it by the way it acts sometimes. Use caution with this Hue Fatale – it tends to turn everything into either a Barbie advertisement or a breast cancer benefit poster. Pink once had a torrid affair with Light Blue that spawned a Lifetime TV movie starring Susan Lucci. Is also a former Mary Kay Cosmetics rep.


7. Black

Not really a color, some argue, but Black seems to thrive on the controversy. Most definitely an Aries, born on the Cusp of Power, Black secretly wants to be a James Bond villain and was recently indicted by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Kinky, with a dark soul, some say that its just misunderstood. But how telling that black is probably your boss’s favorite “color.”


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