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Queens Artists Displaced By MTA Expansion Hold Last Exhibit
By: NY1 News
Some artists in Queens who will be forced from their studios are using an art exhibit to expres frustrations over the MTA’s East Side Access Project.
Artists who work at the Flux Factory in Long Island City, which is being closed and demolished as part of the project, are holding one more show — called “Everything Must Go” – before the building’s doors are shut forever.
“We have an artist who is going to be making, no offense to any actual MTA workers, it’s going to be an MTA worker pinata that we’ll have at the final party,” said Flux Factory director Stefany Anne Golberg.
Flux Factory began as an artist collective in the early 1990s and has been in this space in Long Island City since 2002. At the site, artists create, collaborate, and showcase their art. Many live at the site, as well.
But with the MTA getting ready to demolish the building, artists like Nick Normal need to find new places to live by the end of the month. The situation inspired his artwork.
“I guess the idea was to remove all my personal belongings from my quarters, from my room, and to build a kind of architecture, a Ziggurat as it is, and something that I might be able to live in, in the future,” said artist Nick Normal.
The artists haven’t left an inch of the space untouched. One artist has transformed a very small computer room into a jungle.
Artist Andrea Dezso was also inspired by greener pastures.
“My piece is titled ÎEnjoy It While It Lasts,’” said Dezso. “It’s a large mural and it deals with the idea that we tend to think about murals and public art as permanent and this public art was created with the idea that the space where it lives will be demolished very soon.”
The MTA is razing the building as part of its East Side Access Project, which will connect two Long Island Rail Road lines to Grand Central Station.
In a statement, the MTA said, “The new connection will increase the LIRR’s capacity into Manhattan, dramatically shorten travel time for Long Island and eastern Queens commuters traveling to the east side of Manhattan, and free capacity at Penn Station to allow Metro-North riders to reach the west side.”
As for Flux Factory, it’s looking for a new space but will continue to offer arts programming at various locations after the building closes at the end of the month.
For more information on the Flux Factory show, visit www.fluxfactory.org.