Latest Round of 5Pointz Graffiti Covered as Owners Vow to Keep Walls White
LONG ISLAND CITY — The war is on.
The owners of Long Island City graffiti mecca 5Pointz slapped a fresh coat of white paint on the building overnight in response to a new round of tagging — the latest salvo in the battle with graffiti artists upset about the structure's impending demolition.
The latest round of tags that led to the arrests of at least six men and women Wednesday night — a marked contrast to the decades where the building's owners allowed the artists to transform the walls into their personal canvases.
Building owner Jerry Wolkoff vowed to be vigilant in keeping his walls free of all new tags following the controversial Monday night whitewash of the legendary building.
"I had them go along with the roller and take off all the scribbling — the graffiti they put on overnight. They put F- you on there, things like that," Wolkoff told DNAinfo New York Thursday, adding that the new tags were painted over at around 3 a.m. Thursday morning.
"I just painted over because that's what they've been doing for years," he added, "For years, one was painting over the other. What harm? It's just waiting for another to paint over."
Wolkoff added that he didn't think the latest tags were the work of the same graffiti artists who have painted his building for years.
"I don't believe — I could be wrong — that these were the people that were doing the graffiti on my building prior," he said.
"The talent that was on there now is not that talent that was put on the building."
Miguel Collado, 20; Edgar Rodriguez, 19; Christopher de la Cruz, 19; William Romero, 20; and William Marple, 26, were taken away Wednesday night after writing "RIP 5Pointz" in marker on the building and putting up stickers at a nearby subway stop, police said.
The group was arrested at the scene and issued desk appearance tickets for graffiti and criminal mischief.
Their RIP messages were among a handful of tags spotted on the building Wednesday morning — and also covered up in the latest round of paint.
"Jerry I will never forgive you," someone wrote inside the building's loading dock. "You destroyed our home," wrote another.
Volunteers from 5Pointz held a vigil Tuesday night during which they had people tag on posters or a set of wooden panels.
The graffiti whitewash, though, could end up costing Wolkoff — he may owe the local artists cash damages after painting over their work, the Daily News reported.
Wolkoff said he didn't think there was any validity to that.
"What I do now, I have my men paint over — we finished early this morning some of the work we didn't finish over yesterday."