Petition Launched Against Developers’ Attempt to Trademark 5Pointz

Almost 2,000 street artists and their fans have signed an online petition to prevent a real estate developer from trademarking the name 5Pointz, DNAinfo reports (see Developers Who Razed 5Pointz Seek to Trademark Its Name). The owner of the former graffiti hotspot, G&M Realty, has torn down the abandoned buildings in Long Island City, Queens, to make way for high rise condominiums (see Destruction of Graffiti Mecca 5Pointz Is Underway). The company hope to use the name 5Pointz on its future development.

A representative of the 5Pointz graffiti collective Marie Cecile Flageul told DNAinfo “To us, it’s like adding insult to injury.”

She explained that “even though we’re no longer at the Long Island City location, 5 Pointz as an organization and a cluster of artists is still alive.” According to the artists, G&M Realty owner Jerry Wolkoff is attempting to capitalize on the famous name to sell apartments.

A previous petition to stop the demolition of the original site failed. Artists and fans were also angered by the developer’s decision to whitewash much of the graffiti in the lead up to the razing in 2013.

Wolkoff on the other hand doesn’t appear to understand the group’s anger. “I have no idea why they’re so against me” he said, claiming that the name 5Pointz refers to the geographical location of the former graffiti haven.

The developer revealed that he plans to include a space for street art at the new residential complex and that he intends to invite back the artists when the redevelopment is complete (see New 5Pointz Apartments Will Reserve Wall Space for Graffiti). “It’s the building that was 5Pointz, and the artists are coming back,” he told DNAinfo. “It will be the same, bigger and better than it was before.”

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