A Tribute to 5 Pointz: The Graffiti Street Art Mecca of NYC
November 22, 2013 1 Comment
New York City is on the verge of losing one of it’s most recognizable landmarks. 5 Pointz, also known as the “Phun Phactory” is set to be demolished and replaced with high-rise apartment building complexes. While most residents of New York City could care less, artists from not only the city, but around the world are up in arms about the decision to remove the graffiti mecca that has blessed our city for over 30 years.
Having visited 5 Pointz myself, I am disappointed to see the entire project turn to ruin. As a major slap in the face, a majority of the building was painted over in white paint before its eventual demolition.This was done secretly overnight without notice. Years and years of legal creative artwork gone overnight.
I believe that the city and the owners of the building don’t want outsiders trying to salvage pieces of the building during the demolition process. Makes sense that they would not want the operation being interrupted, but it doesn’t make sense that they wouldn’t allow the respective artists to have a chance to salvage their masterpieces.
5 Pointz blessed Long Island City in Queens with its convenient location alongside the 7 train line. The graffiti mecca was visible from the train and street, creating maximum exposure to the creativity of the artists who designed the exterior of the building.
Run by Jonathan “Meres” Cohen, 5 Pointz has become a tourist destination for artists worldwide. Covered from head to toe, inside and outside, 5 Pointz was the destination for artists of all shapes and sizes to express themselves through their work. The ability to legally create art to display for all to see was the focal point of 5 Pointz.
Even if you are not interested in “graffiti art”. 5 Pointz features a variety of murals that define what our city is all about. 5 Pointz captured perfectly the urban style of its featured artists.
The 200,00 sq. ft. of 5 Pointz is owned by Jerry Wolkoff and Jerry said that by painting over the art at night (with police protection), he felt he was doing “the right thing.” The “right thing” is up for debate here Jerry, but you own the building so what can we say?
As much as it is a shame to see 5 Pointz go, I am sure something will take its place in the future. Hopefully the mecca will resurrect itself into an even better destination with a location to be determined at a later date. Street art will never die in our great city. I foresee many artists coming together to create a new masterpiece of a destination that we all can appreciate. Art is creative expression, and when done legally, it as an outlet for creativity and inspiration for those seeking to improve their artistic talents. Without art, life would be mundane and the same old boring routine we all put up with each day.
R.I.P. 5 Pointz.