On November 19, 2013, without warning, a New York City ordinance was passed to “whitewash” the famous painted walls of NYC’s “5 Pointz”. 5-Pointz, located in Long Island City, New York, has become known as the Mecca of street art, “where aerosol artists from around the globe paint colorful pieces on the walls of a 200,000-square-foot factory building [5ptz.com]”. Many credit the space with giving birth to the street art phenomenon that became mainstream with artists like Banksy and Shepard Fairey.
Save The Walls (#savethewalls) is an initiative, created by my friend, Jeff Tepper, that is not attempting to create another 5-Pointz, but rather, to preserve existing street art locations across NYC, as well as provide for a new way to contribute to the gallery that is our New York City. The idea is to create “temporary walls” made of shrink wrap that artists can paint without tagging public property. The end goal would be that artists would broadcast their pieces across social media using #SavetheWalls to openly share their work with not only NYC, but the world. While this isn’t quite the same as it was, it is a creative and, for all intents and purposes, a harmless way of KEEPING ART & CULTURE FREE, as it should be!
Save The Walls essentially started out as a class project that my classmate and I, Phil Pagliardo, were both really passionate about. While it is brand new, the mission, thus far, is to simply spread awareness and love of street art throughout NYC.
We would love to see artists sending us pictures of their temporary walls across the city and/or world, and using the hashtag #SaveTheWalls. We are looking to inspire people to participate and help save an essential part of New York’s culture.” – Jeff Tepper, founder
Check out the the #SAVETHEWALLS video below to get a better picture of the initiative and for those of you who feel so inclined, please contribute!