Ditmas Park

Mosaic Mural in Progress in Newkirk Plaza Passageway

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Mosaic Mural at Newkirk Plaza, via BRP FB

The mosaic mural that started on one side of the Newkirk Plaza passageway this past summer is expanding, and you may notice people from the Brooklyn Recycle Project working on it this week. They ask that neighbors don’t touch it while it’s drying.

It’s already looking pretty amazing. Thanks to the Newkirk Cares Collaborative, Juan Carlos Pinto and the volunteers working on it, the Flatbush Development Corporation, and the building’s landlord for all helping to make this happen.

Photo by Brooklyn Recycle Project

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29 COMMENTS

  1. I’ve wondered if that passageway wouldn’t be nicer if it were open to the sky. The roof doesn’t appear to serve any structural function – it just connects two freestanding buildings.

  2. I can’t believe this is going forward

    You can never fault an artist who has a chance to display their
    work

    You MUST fault the review board and funding organization
    that allows public areas to be abused with public funds.

    The naïve paintings of flying nymphs can be panted over with
    little cost but the stuck on plates and tiles will have to be chiseled off and
    resurfaced.

  3. Peregrine has been on a one-person rampage against most of the public art in our neighborhood! It’s fine to disagree or have different tastes, nothing wrong with some healthy debate, but what do you propose instead? Blank walls?

  4. On the contrary, I am a huge fan of public art. One need only look in the subway system to see how it works best. The Otterness (Brooklyn artist) sculptures at 14th St. the soundscape on the Q at 34th etc. My friend Julie Harvey had a huge mural downtown until it was destroyed on 9/11. And of I course love Diego Rivera especially when he pissed off Rockefeller.
    The mural on the side of Coop is nice and I hope they finish
    it now that the advertizing on the upper left corner gone, I wouldn’t mind seeing “Cortelyou” get a color so it’s not so hidden. The pixilated murals on the sideof the defunct “Solo are OK.
    I object to inappropriate art in spaces that were not thought out and chosen by unqualified people/orgs. Poor murals cannot replace true economic development and only point out a community in need.

  5. It’s a pretty mural. It’s nicer than the cinder blocks that it will be covering. Yes, there is lots of public art throughout NYC by more established artists, but who is to say who is qualified to choose public art or not, or which public art is inappropriate or not? Furthermore, until our neighborhood gets the funds to secure “appropriate” public art, this is what we have. So please try to be more thankful of the artists and organizations who are committed to bringing art to our neighborhood.

  6. To be honest, I think I would prefer the cinder blocks. In saying this I mean no disrespect to anyone, especially the artists. I’m just being truthful.

  7. I don’t care for the mural and would rather that the wall be bare, I suppose. It’s not a big deal to me though and I only speak for myself.

  8. Public artwork is usually expensive and ugly. Nobody usually asks for it and the people who choose it have no artistic vision whatsoever. The last one I saw was over a million bucks and was an ugly mess. Ever see those little copper subway people? Why in the hell do we need them? They spend a ton on this garbage and half the subway doesn’t even work and half the stops don’t have any MTA people stationed there. What do you want? Ugly public artwork or a stop where you won’t get raped with a working train?

  9. Public art gives us pride in our community. It lifts our spirit, renews our perspective, and reminds us to be kind to the next person we encounter. I acknowledge my biases because I love ALL public art and believe it is a huge service to the community, and a labour of immense love and generosity. I am also biased because I have helped the truly talented and visionary artist on this mosaic, and throughout the hours I have spent in that Newkirk Plaza passageway, 100% of the comments I have heard from passers by, of all ages and so many different cultural, ethnic and demographic backgrounds, have been extremely positive, showing delight and gratitude. The resources for this community art project happen to have been raised by the community it serves, a community that seems to appreciate the value of public art. Our souls need beauty like our bodies need food. This art is for everybody, it’s free and it is going to be beautiful (it’s not done yet, be patient!). I know that a community that invests in public art is investing in a healthier, safer, saner community. Thank you to all who support it.

  10. You really feel that way? It’s not done yet, but when it’s complete, I think you’ll find it quite beautiful. We’re all entitled to our different tastes, but I find it breathtaking, and I think it makes a positive difference in a lot of people’s lives already. The community raised the money for this project, not public funds.

  11. Public art contributes to making neighborhoods safer. There are plenty of statistics on that. As to it being ugly, I guess we are all entitled to our tastes, but we must acknowledge that some people find it really stunning, and believe it to be a very worthwhile, long-term investment in that community.

  12. Yeah sorry for all the negative mutants on the blog, I think hey are the same people who were defending littering. Keep on making the world a better place and try not to let the jerks get you down.

  13. What makes them “negative mutants”, exactly? The fact that they don’t care for a particular mural? And what’s the connection between that and littering? Maybe you have answers to these questions, but right now, you’re the one who sounds like a jerk.

  14. “Public art contributes to making neighborhoods safer.
    There are plenty of statistics on that”

    It is that MYTH that keeps publicly funded orgs spending
    hard raised money on ill advised projects like these murals when the money needs to be channeled to the after school programs etc.
    The murals put orgs like FDC in the public eye but detract from the work they need to be doing for after school programs.

  15. I really like the mural so far. But I am astounded by the attitudes of many here. Here’s a work of public art that’s intended to benefit the community and bring people together, Yet its admirers are here saying “Like this or you’re a ‘negative mutant'”. Am I the only one here who sees the humor in this?

  16. They are negative mutants because I am doing exactly what I told Ray not to do. I am letting it get to me. It really depresses me and gets me down when people seem to prefer bare cinder blocks, piss, bricked in porches, stumps, and litter to public art and feel so strongly about it that they would comment on a forum like this about their love of urine and trash. To me it is a no-brainer. It doesn’t matter what the art is or whether you like it, it’s better than a urine covered cinder block and a smashed bottle of wild turkey. And yes I do equate the mentalities and aesthetics.

  17. There’s nothing inherently ugly about a cinder block. It’s just a cinder block, a piece of building material. Do you think that earth itself is ugly?

    It’s no more unreasonable to prefer a blank, unadorned surface to a mural one doesn’t like than it is to prefer a silent ride in an elevator to one that involves listening to music one doesn’t like.

    It’s time for the art Nazis to lighten up.

    FWIW: I think the mural is fabulous!

  18. And in fact, kids from after school programs have also been helping out with these public art projects, and in so doing, learning valuable skills in craftsmanship, coordination, working with tools, following instructions, safety, respect, communication, teamwork, self expression, self- esteem and giving back to the community. In fact, it’s not a myth at all. I would be happy to show you the hard evidence, but I’m sure you are perfectly capable of researching the facts yourself. When we put time and energy into beautifying our community, we take pride in it, and treat each other and our environment better, i.e., less crime/litter etc. Another lesson it seems we can all learn from public art — not to take ourselves too seriously! There are room for all types, so take a deep breath and appreciate the beauty.

  19. You are misinterpreting me Gail. I do not believe that there is anything inherently wrong with cinder blocks. But I find it difficult to believe that anyone could think that cinder blocks are better than these people who are trying to bring happiness to us.

    Also, i am well aware that I am overeacting. But all of this talk about the littering, and the crime, and now this has gotten me down. I need some positivity and the idea that someone would pounce on this art on a blank cinder block wall is just pushing me over the edge.

  20. I agree with you that these good folks are better than cinder blocks. I don’t think anyone ever denied that. I also think that the mural is fabulous. But the people who said they didn’t care for the mural weren’t “pouncing”. They were just expressing their opinion and doing it in a way that was quite respectful. They simply don’t like the mural. Perhaps they would like some other mural. None of theym claimed that all murals are bad. They just appear not to care for this particular mural. What, here, is so difficult to beleve? Must one like all murals?

  21. One doesn’t have to like all murals. One doesn’t have to appreciate public art. One doesn’t have to tell the artist that they prefer a dirty dark tunnel to their art in a public forum either. But I do think that is not respectful. Also, I would go back and read through some of the comments, some of them aren’t respectful in any sense.

  22. Actually, the FDC mural on East 16th Street WAS an after school project, done by kids in the neighborhood. It was up for a number of years (before being covered over by the new building owner) without one bit of graffiti, while graffiti tags are still very much a part of our local streetscape. What does that tell you?

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