A concrete park sprayed with graffiti is scheduled to no longer exist soon. Located under the tracks of the 7 train on Long Island City in Queens, NY, it’s been there for 10 years. Meres is the name of the gentleman that acts as curator of the legendary site, that’s said to be shutting down this September.
I say it’s “said to be shutting down,” because it’s been getting shut down now for the past two-to-three years – it’s a real estate game, the owner’s been weighing his options. A couple of years ago, Mere’s and the landlord of the property were in talks and at odds, things were the same when I saw him a few days ago. Other residents in the building where 5Pointz exists, say the “Graffiti Mecca” will be gone by the fall. Although it is not officially a park, by way of the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, it’s known around the world. Not all of the graffiti painted at 5Pointz is permanent as many pieces have changed over the years, except for a few select pieces. I first heard about 5Pointz at its inception 10 years ago. The first time I was actually there, was in 2010. Since then, several contributions have changed or been painted over. Among artists that have tagged the 5Pointz walls are Meres, Bisco, Bishop203, Just One, Leias, Zeso and Zimad.
From the 5Pointz website… ‘Graffiti veteran Jonathan Cohen, better known as “Meres One”, is the founder of 5Pointz Aerosol Art Center, Inc. and curator of the outdoor gallery. The Flushing native adopted his tag in his teenage years after determining that M, R and E were his best calligraphic letters. Meres took an interest in graffiti at age 13 after seeing an aerosol-based painted Smurf on a wall and flipping through a few graffiti books. He started the “The Deadly4Mula (TD4)” crew five years later. By the mid-90s, Meres had studied art at New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology, sold a few paintings, and was transitioning his craft from tagging and throw-ups to piecing. He has produced hundreds of aerosol art murals throughout all five New York boroughs, along the East Coast, and even in Holland.’
5cense.com describes it as “a place where graffiti artists have been invited from all 5 boroughs – hence the name – and from around the world to hone their art in these proving grounds. And while there are some loose guidelines posted as to who can paint what where, the enforcement is seemingly based on common decency and mutual respect.” According to the 5Pointz website, there are over 600 works tagged at 5Pointz. Throughout the past ten years, several hip-hop artists have been featured at 5Pointz. Among them DJ Marley Marl and MCs NAS, LL Cool J and the Notorious B.I.G. — Biggie’s mural is still there. During a recent visit, two guys from Paris were making their mark at the historical landmark.
Back in 2011, the following letter was posted on the 5Pointz website:
“First and foremost, THANK YOU all for the World-Wide Support. The recently announced development plans to convert 5Pointz into a high-rise residential tower and luxury shopping mall came as a great surprise to us all. We wish we could answer all of your questions and concerns right now but the truth is we were just as surprised by the news as everybody else. Over the past decade Jerry Wolkoff has given us the opportunity to transform the warehouse at Jackson and Crane into 5Pointz known to you all as the Graffiti Mecca, a spot Jerry himself has referred to as a great place. All we can do right now is sit tight and prepare for the new season, we have walls to fix and materials to acquire in order to welcome you all for our re-opening. We are going to keep on doing what we do best – looking forward to seeing you all and witnessing another great season at 5Pointz.
Peace — Meres and the 5Pointz team”
After the letter, there was a request to fill out a petition and send it to everyone you know. While it’s still there, if you’re a person that loves and appreciates ART… you may want to make the trip and see it for yourself – it’s so much more than just writing on the wall. What would be dope, is if whatever happens with the property, that they incorporate existing dynamics of 5Pointz within the new structure. To get there, take the 7; G; E or M train to Court Square. Below are several photos I took when visiting on both trips.
for more go to the website @ http://5ptz.com