I am appalled at some of the comments our facebook page received about the recent arrest of one of Greenpoint’s artists Takewi Miyakawa for putting up a guerilla art installation on Bedford Ave.

Marie: “the so called artists are rude, dirty and disrespectful… They are trash and so is their wanna be art!”
Denise: “They made this neighborhood disgusting and dirty.”
Agnes: “No consideration for anyone else but themselves.”
Jennifer: “Sorry but this neighborhood has gone to crap with all these so called ‘artists.'”

Hitler hated artists, too. Entartete Kunst! This is the term he used to describe Modern art during his regime, which translates to “degenerate art.” Slow down, I am not calling these ladies Nazis, just bigots.

The Wiki entry for bigotry cites this quotation from Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. “The mind of a bigot is like the pupil of the eye; the more light you pour upon it, the more it will contract,” so the following attempt to dispel their beliefs may be pointless, so this is for the rest of you, who love and support art in the community!

Three very worthwhile art projects are on the horizon, all based out of Greenpoint: PaperJam’s Touchlight, The Kite Machine  & The Project Collective’s Art & Music Fundraiser this Saturday June 2nd, to raise money for Uproar Art at the Dekalb Market.


PaperJam is a collaboration between Greenpoint artist Hannah Lamar Simmons and Australian artist Rebecca Kinsey. While sharing a studio during a residency at Art Student League, a wall was to be built to divide their space, but after a few days they decided to not build the wall and their relationship developed into a match made in art heaven.

Their current project Touchlight is an installation that will be on display on Governor’s Island for Figment Art Fair on June 9th & 10th (a short ferry ride away from Greenpoint!) In a dark tunnel, the artists will install a series of solar panel touch lights. Stitched on words, “Touch Touch Touch” and “Play Play Play” will invite passers to stop and light them up in order to “activate neutral space” and cultivate “adult play,” as Hannah explained.

The more we chatted , the more I realized that the touch lights are a metaphor for the playful and mutually inspiring relationship between the two artists, who turn on each other’s creative lightbulbs. Even their independent work is inspired by one another. As hard worker’s with the tendency to “wear themselves out,” Hannah said they both “Push Push Push,” just like their touch lights.

PaperJam’s Touchlight Kickstarter campaign ends tomorrow, June 1st, so please donate and go and press their lights at Figment.

The next project by Kite Collective called The Kite Machine is also a collaboration between two Greenpoint women, Lee Dares and Whitney Richardson. The project is a traveling exhibition of handmade kites made from recycled windbreakers and umbrellas that will be sold for only $0.50 in a refurbished snack machine at Rockaway Taco on the boardwalk this summer.

Why kites? “Kites lend a symbolic sense of nature. You can directly relate to nature and people around you. Kites are uplifting,” said Whitney. Kites for kites sake is the simple idea behind this project, essentially giving children and adults a tool to enjoy nature and have fun.

Local artists Zebediah Keneally and Alison Kizu-Blaire will design limited edition kites, as well.

The goal  is to make more kite machines in other cities and establish Kite Collective as an cultural/educational non-profit to teach about kites. The Kite Machine Kickstarter ends June 2nd, so please donate and pick-up a kite on the beach this summer! This Saturday, June 2nd from 12:30-2:30pm, The Kite Machine will kick-off at Rockaway Beach Club 96th St Concessions!

Last, The Project Collective, a Greenpoint based curatorial project, a platform that brings together artists and musicians in order to create dialogue and raise awareness and funds for local charities, is having an Art & Music Fundraiser this Saturday, June 2nd from 10am-10pm at the Dekalb Market for Uproar Arts, a non-profit that offers free and low-cost art education in Brooklyn schools.

After moving to Greenpoint from Manhattan, Victoria Varney, one of The Project Collective’s organizers, “found her home for the first time in NY.” Inspired by “the sense of community” she felt, she wanted to get involved, which is how The Project Collective was formed. A few creative friends who wanted to celebrate this community sought to bridge a gap between their emerging artists friends, charities and locals who would come out to support both. Since 2011, they have raised money for Brooklyn High School of the Arts, Hour Children and Make The Road, all the while having a lot of fun doing it!

This Saturday after a month long build of art installations at the Dekalb Market by artists Andrea Burgay, Jo Q. Nelson and Mano-Gray, The Project Collective will celebrate all day with fun activities, like nail art from Ria Nailz, a newspaper planter workshop with seeds and soil donated by Hayseed’s Big City Farm Supply, tarot card readings by Greenpointer Clara Bizna$$ and a performance by Maria Builes. At 6pm, a music showcase presented by Supercrush Studio will include performances by MarigoldRaquel Bell and Il Abanico.

I don’t know about you but there is nothing disgusting about any of these artists or their public art projects, which all Greenpointers can participate in and enjoy!

Join the Conversation


  1. I don’t really think the coments are really against art but really against the actual people that have moved into GPoint. I am a lifelong Greenpointer and I do have to say that the neighborhood isn’t as great as it used to be. Apartment prices have gone up. I have heard from more than one building super that these “hipsters” “artists” whatever you want to call them cannot pay for apartments and their parents are willing to pay any price so that they can “experience” living in Brooklyn. Each one of these New Greenpointers also has a dog. Like each one! I have never seen so much poop on the ground that’s not being picked up. My daughter and I have had to walk around the “mines” every morning. I can’t wait to catch them in the act. I love the fact that we have our own art galleries, stores and restaurants but at what price? I’m also getting a bit tired of reading about how these New Greenpointers are having meetings on how to better Greenpoint. I didn’t know we needed saving or that we were lacking something. Don’t get me wrong, everyplace benefits from having something new introduced to it but they make it sound like they have to save us somehow and that we have no idea what we are doing. I had tried going to a meeting over at Anella the other day but couldn’t. I didn’t want to know how to better GP (because its already great) but I wanted to see the ratio of New Greenpointers to Old School Greenpointers. Just curious. You also have to think about why there is all this backlash. This is certainly not the first time I’ve heard negative things said about “hipsters” or as my mother calls them “hippies” (in her spanish accent). I agree with you, that there is nothing disgusting about their art projects. Just maybe in their approach. I hope I have not offended anyone as this is not my intent but more of a getting it off my chest moment.

  2. Its a shame that you compare people who disagree with your opinions to hitler. And its a shame that your only response to people who disagree with you is to call them bigots. Pot calling the kettle ey?

  3. Marie, Denise, Agnes, Jennifer; now those names all sound like the names of real Brooklyn girls (let’s hope) as opposed to Megan, Molly, Zooey, and let’s throw in a guy – Zebadiah – who see right through the fauxhemian invasion and this overkill of ART ART ART ART ART!!!!

    Author – just read your story over; it’s just another one of the thousands upon thousands of blogs articles that talk about people and projects that vanish into thin air – meaningless, childish, horrible effing art. How can everything be art? The only art these interlopers are good at is the art of driving out normal working people so they can transform Brooklyn into an extension of their liberal arts campuses. It’s so over and done already.

    Oh and the reason I’m commenting? One of those 4 girls contacted me to complain about offended you got. I’m sure they’re not the only actual Greenpointers who have visited your site and were disappointed to see you are just another hipster and gentrification cheerleader. Shame on you!


  4. it’s hilarious that “one of the 4 girls” contacted the most hateful and intolerant website in brooklyn. so much so that you, author, cannot even reveal your identity. at least they aren’t cowards.
    i don’t know why this turned into a conversation about hipsters since i never even mentioned the word in my article. but on that note, since we are just lumping everyone together…
    using the word hipster as a derogatory term is a new form of discrimination. since the word doesn’t have an explicit race, sex, religious affiliation, it gives people the opportunity to openly air their animosity.
    imagine if there was an entire blog dedicated to hating the “old school brooklyn people”
    you can call me whatever you want, but i focus my time trying to promote positive things, not wasting my time on the internet complaining about people i don’t know and how they ruined my neighborhood, or worse, like diehipster speaking violently about them.

    1. promoting positive things like nazi references. *Rolls eyes*

      funny that you say “hipster” is a derogatory term. Guess comparing someone to hitler isnt as much of a big deal?

      I’ve been to and experienced many artist exhibits in gpt and actually enjoyed many of them. However, you completely overreacted to my “they dont think about anyone but themselves” comment (although its very true from my personal experience) and had no right to compare anyone to hitler and his views.

      Prime example from a few minutes ago – I was walking on manhattan ave near java and an “artist” with a beard , an easel (presummably for a new art project) and skinny jeans BERATED an elderly italian woman. HE knocked into her while walking and in response to her “you say sorry” , he called her an “old hag that needs to get the hell out of this neighborhood or die because you dont belong here anymore”.

      While there are great artists and some cool exhibits, the majority of these artists/hipsters demonstrate the above attitude.

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