Art Activism in Jersey City’s Powerhouse Arts District

by Edmund Kasubinski

Downtown Jersey City’s “powerhouse arts district” is a section of town that used to be filled with active warehouses and industries and is now becoming a gentrified residential neighborhood.  The original intention of this particular section was affordable studio spaces for artists, as the name suggests.  Inevitably, the neighborhood, which is getting more and more recognition, is becoming the destination for high rise condominiums and storefronts.  Right now there’s pretty much just a cafe and a dog grooming parlor among the artist studios and apartments.  The area still looks like a ghost industry town, except with cars parked on every street.

There is a neighborhood group called the PADNA (Powerhouse Arts District Neighborhood Association) that meets to help keep the neighborhood in control of its inhabitants.

Also there are local artists, who are against the commercial influence coming into the district.  Last weekend, I saw a sort of DIY activist art project at a site that is planned to have a high rise building built.  From what I understand it was originally intended to be a park.  Here’s some photos:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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