Sometimes you see some graffiti that’s just so … [Italian chef kiss] mwah. It is easy to clown on people who move to Brooklyn’s luxury buildings, since we’ve turned those ever-present newly constructed buildings into too-shiny, too-expensive glass totems of what’s wrong with Brooklyn’s development. It’s particularly easy, however, to dunk on the people who are moving to 365 Bond St., the first luxury rental building built on the Gowanus Canal, with apartments that cost up to $7,200/month that offer a view of the notoriously toxic waterway. The apartments are being marketed to people as if the waterway were a picturesque riverside, with marketing materials that say it’s “located on the newly created waterfront esplanade park.” They included a photo of people dangling their feet over the fetid waters.
So yesterday, DNAinfo reported on this graffiti that appeared adjacent to the building, reminding them that despite what marketing materials say, the Gowanus has a long way to go before it’s like the romantic canals of Venice, Italy (or even Venice, California, for that matter).
DNAinfo reports the graffiti may be the work of street artist WolfTits, who also has other graffiti on the wall too.
We have a dirty love for the Gowanus of course: Its oily, stagnant waters reflect the scrappy spirit of the neighborhood’s arts, music and nightlife scene, which is home to things like last weekend’s Gowanus Open Studios and the Morbid Anatomy Flea Market, the very features that luxury development threatens to push out of the neighborhood. It should be noted that the building at 365 Bond St. does include some affordable housing units too, though those people are probably not the target of the graffito.
The canal inspires absurd stunts and unlikely mascots. But imagine being sold on Gowanus as the Venice of Brooklyn, and then arriving to find a fetid Superfund site full of literal shit. You’d feel like quite the jerko too.
Hereby moving that we use “jerko” to refer to all people who move into luxury buildings that stick out like a sore, poo-covered thumb in their neighborhoods.