5 Ptz in Long Island, NY has been laid to rest. Among lawsuits from the proprietor and petitions for conservation from the artists and citizens, neither side could come to a compromise. During the early morning hours on November 19th, 2013, with a police escort, 5 ptz was whitewashed to supposedly end the suffering from people who wanted to leave it up. The buildings owners claim that they have allowed it to be used for graffiti and taggers for the better part of 30 years. It was time for it to end and now they have plans to install a $400 million dollar residential living area. The owners of 5 ptz claim that they will set aside a large amount of space for graffiti artists.
However this doesn’t numb the devastating effects from the choice. When you live in an urban area noted as the “concrete jungle” and there’s not much nature surrounding you, you have to use your imagination and find some beauty and creativity somewhere. Urban art is an important ideal in many inner city homes. It gives kids and young adults free exploration to paint and enhance their skills on most buildings that are not occupied, but still standing and with each passing day becoming more dilapidated. Instead of staring at ruin, artists decided to create visually stunning masterpieces used by the application of spray cans. How they can do that, I’ll never know. But it’s something to be said for people who possess that talent and while some may deem it as destruction of property, some see it as restoration of purpose.
We should really pay attention to urban art as an extraordinary field of creativity. There’s a difference between scrawling some paint on the walls that doesn’t really send an artistic message (some refer to as “tagging”) and creating stunning visual pieces (some refer to as “graffiti art”) So the next time you see a piece of graffiti art on the side of a building, take a step back an imagine the life of that artist and why they might have found their reason in painting.