One of the most controversial and visible form of underground art will be used to transform a historical residence in the Glen Cove community of Long Island.
According to Newsday, a major news publication dedicated to the New York metropolitan region, the First City Project is being coordinated by the owner of a Glen Cove mansion that will not be preserved. Instead, the 9,000 square feet residence will become a canvas for more than 100 street artists from around the world.
The owner of the home has defended his decision to allow graffiti artists to transform the property, which is more than 200 years old. Mayor Reginald Spinello initially welcomed the initiative since it would improve upon the old home; however, there have been complaints by neighbors after a graffiti incident affected the ongoing graffiti art project.
It so happened that residents believed that a series of collage images were pasted by rival graffiti crews on a Sunday night. This was a valid concern since graffiti art tends to be territorial and is often attacked or defaced by other writers of dubious street ethics. That was not the case here; the artist known as DAIN from Brooklyn pasted the images, but he is willing to fix them if people do not approve of his style.
The project has thus far been conducted in a smooth fashion with artists coming from as far as Sweden and the United Kingdom. Being closed to New York City has proven irresistible for some of these artists, who are rumored to hit walls in Manhattan at night and after they have worked on the project in the daytime.
Teachers from the local Glen Cove High School have been supportive of the project, which has helped to get students interested in the world of street art. The teachers are explaining the difference between making works of graffiti art and tagging, vandalism and marking of territory by street gangs.
The owner of the Glen Cove property originally intended to keep it for historic preservation purposes; however, he later decided to make an artistic contribution to the community. The home will eventually serve as an art gallery.