5 Pointz RIP: Iconic Graffiti Mecca Getting Buffed

11.19.13 Bucky Turco

“5 pointz is gone,” reads this morning’s update on the aerosol institution’s Twitter. “Painted white overnight by the owner with police protection.” Pillowy white botches can now be seen spotting the building, covering up roughly 80% of the exterior pieces.

Formerly referred to as the Phun Phactory, the massive building in Long Island City has operated as a legal graffiti playground for nearly two decades, giving writers a safe space to practice and showcase their skills. The owner of the property announced in 2011 that it would be demolished and turned into a sprawling residential complex, sparking a legal battle and outcry by artists.

In addition to allowing artists to spray paint the exterior with their vibrant names, characters and murals — making it visible from the 7 Train — the building also housed numerous studios for artists.

Graffiti artist and official curator of the the site, MERES ONE, has led the fight to save 5 Pointz. Here a video interview of him discussing the spot. He also helped organize many rallies to preserve the “graffiti mecca,” with the most recent show of support taking place this past weekend.

It didn’t work.

(Photos: Aymann Ismail/ANIMALNewYork)