New York City’s graffiti mecca, 5 Pointz, an international destination for urban street art, was quietly painted over early Tuesday morning, leaving the majority of the 200,000 square feet of warehouses whitewashed.
The video above, filmed last Friday, is one of the last looks at 5 Pointz before the art was covered. Anthony Martinez, a 5 Pointz artist, said that he would miss both the community space and the ability to produce his art.
This morning, New Yorkers took to Twitter to express their shock and disappointment with the whitewashing:
The paint job was directed by 5 Pointz property owner Jerry Wolkoff, who along with his son David, plan on demolishing the warehouses to build luxury high-rise buildings. "I am going to be building,” Jerry said in a phone interview with Fusion. “That's my passion. I put up buildings. The time is right to build my high rises there.”
The demolition is scheduled to begin in December, when the warehouse roofs will be torn down. Jerry commented to the Wall Street Journal today that the decision to whitewash the art was a difficult one, which he decided was a better alternative for the artists than seeing their work torn down through the demolition.
But Jerry and David have promised that urban art will continue to be a part of the new high-rises. “They want to paint, and I am going to let them paint,” he said. “I am going to let them come back and paint and put aerosol and graffiti like they have done before.”
Fusion will continue to report on 5 Pointz throughout the day. Check back here for updates or tune into The Morning Show tomorrow for the full story.