Landlord Evicts Artist’s Quirky Lower East Side Troll Museum
The museum has been forced to vacate the Orchard Street apartment.
A little piece of what makes New York it’s quirky, weird, best self is now a thing of the past, with the eviction of artist “Rev” Jen Miller and her unique Troll Museum.
Located on the Lower East Side at 124 Orchard Street, the Troll Museum housed a massive collection of Troll dolls and psychedelic Troll paintings by Miller, a performance artist and outsize personality who wears plastic elf ears and wrote a “Diary of an Art Star” column for artnet Magazine.
Miller had lived in the rent-stabilized apartment, a six-floor walk-up, since 1995, and is currently charged $1,590 a month. She previously faced eviction in 2014, but was able to raise $5,000 on GoFundMe to keep both her apartment and the Troll Museum doors open. A series of illnesses over the past year have kept Miller from working, and she admittedly has not paid the rent since last summer.
“She got evicted because she wasn’t paying her rent,” a woman who answered the phone at Misrahi Realty told artnet News.
“The Lower East Side used to be a great neighborhood but has now turned into the greediest shitshow on earth. The Troll Museum was one of the final holdouts of bohemian culture,” wrote Miller on Facebook according to Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York, inviting friends to help her remove her collection from the apartment.
Bowery Boogie reports that a city marshal ordered Miller to leave the premises on June 23. Screenshots from a video posted to Facebook that is currently unavailable show Miller wearing nothing but a towel as she is forced to leave. The landlord subsequently gave her between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on June 28 to clear out her possessions.
“I have no fucking idea where all this is going to go,” she told Gothamist as she packed up the apartment.
Unfortunately, taking everything was an impossibility. “The Lower East Side is gonna have the funnest party taking my shit off the street,” said Miller to the Villager, which claims she is exploring legal options that would give her an additional three months to come up with the back rent.
“Rent stabilization just makes owners more greedy, and they’ll go to any lengths to get people out so they can raise the price,” she said to Gothamist, admitting she might try to reclaim her apartment even if the courts do no support her cause. “I guess they can arrest me. Let them.”
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