The Art Of Relevance
As the struggle to save 5 Pointz unfolds a larger question presents itself. By definition what is 5 Pointz?
It seems that the powers that be, from councilman to borough president, justify their position or lack there of, by disregarding 5 Pointz relevance as an organization and as a cultural institution.
If we look at a simple definition of what a museum is: “Museum comes from the Latin word, and is pluralized as “museums” (or rarely, “musea”). It is originally from the Greek Μουσεῖον (Mouseion), which denotes a place or temple dedicated to the Muses (the patron divinities in Greek mythology of the arts), and hence a building set apart for study preservation or creation of the arts.”
Ok so the Institute Of Higher Burnin’ meets all the criteria, or does it? The lack of parking for tour buses and possibly of greater importance the free access 365 days a year could explain why we are not seen, when convenient, as a museum or legitimate art institution. Never mind the 150+ publications from travel tour guides to art books which list 5 Pointz as a must see or as one of the largest aerosol art exhibits in the world.
Should we then understand that operating on very little budget for over 11 years without government funding or grants prevents us from being seen as a museum? Shall we conclude that our 30 plus summer events, operated and organized without budget, and facilitated by performers and volunteers alike makes them irrelevant. One fact is certain, we are free and we are free to do as we please. The lack of government funding gives us total control on what we decide to showcase: HIP HOP by the people for the people.
As July unfolds, we are nevertheless proud to reflect on major past and upcoming partnerships for 2013:
Participating in Armory Week for the 2nd year with a stencil show at 5 Pointz curated by Luis Zimad Lamboy: “From Blades to Walls” hosting Tunisian artists El Seed and Jaye during the Tunisian World Nomad festival 2013 with The FIAF NYC.
Welcoming Eli Klein Fine Arts and trend setting artist Liu Bolin for his last performance in NYC, shot by fabulous Martha Cooper.
Getting ready to welcome Kool Herc as Summer Stage celebrates 40 years of Hip Hop.
Maybe this is the problem, our ability to make everything with nothing … Maybe we are too relevant without becoming servant of a bigger system. Should we work on the art of “Reverence” and bow down to the powers that be? I doubt it, we value creativity and integrity too much.
By Marie 5 Pointz Fam
World Nomads 2013: Jaye El Seed Meres One production at 5 Pointz
Liu Bolin at 5 Pointz with Meres One and Marie
Kool Herc portrait by D Mastrion at 5 Pointz