Allen Ginsburg mural by Damien Mitchell for the Museum of Street Art in New York City via Mad Hatters NYC Blog

5Pointz Resurrected: The Museum of Street Art (MoSA) in New York City

When we showed up at the new CitizenM Bowery Hotel for our tour of the Museum of Street Art, the chipper front desk clerk showing us the way asked, “Do you know about 5Pointz?” We excitedly proclaimed that we’d actually visited the original (which returned such a big WOW that we felt like we’d just confessed to being present when electricity was discovered). It shouldn’t be surprising. The walls of 5Pointz were whitewashed less than five years ago, but its loss was felt amongst street art lovers worldwide. It’s a local legend, and treated as such.




Gone, but not forgotten

Justin in front of a mural at the Original 5Pointz in Long Island City in 2013 via Mad Hatters NYC Blog
At the 5Pointz in Long Island City in 2013
Lynn in front of a mural by The Yok and Sheryo from the Original 5Pointz in Long Island City via Mad Hatters NYC Blog
Artist: @_sheryo. At 5Pointz in Long Island City in 2013.
Mural of a girl's face in profile by VBallentine99 for the Museum of Street Art in New York City via Mad Hatters NYC Blog
Artist: @vballentine99
Cityscape mural by Kenji Takabayashi for the Museum of Street Art in New York City via Mad Hatters NYC Blog
Artist: @kenji.nyc

Street art culture is such that it builds upon the path laid by its predecessors, so even though street art is now widely celebrated in New York City at hubs like The Bushwick Collective and The Welling Court Mural Project, it seems fitting to have a spot that pays homage to 5Pointz. Meres One was the primary curator at 5Pointz and fought hard to turn it into a graffiti museum. So when CitizenM offered him the space at their latest New York City location, he worked with co-curator Marie Cecile Flageul to bring 20 artists who had originally displayed work at 5Pointz together to build the Museum of Street Art (MoSA).

CitizenM seems like the perfect partner for the venture: its hotels feature bright pops of color, contemporary design and a passion for art. Its Bowery location even more so, as The Bowery and Lower East Side have a strong connection to the street art scene in New York City. It’s home to the Bowery Wall, of course, and many of its structures are canvases for street artists from around the world.




RuPaul mural by Elle for the Museum of Street Art in New York City via Mad Hatters NYC Blog
Artist: @ellestreetart

Justin in front of an abstract mural at the Museum of Street Art in New York City via Mad Hatters NYC Blog

Lynn in front of a paint splatter mural at the Museum of Street Art in New York City via Mad Hatters NYC Blog

Mural of pickle running by Sheryo & Yok for the Museum of Street Art in New York City via Mad Hatters NYC Blog
Artist: @_sheryo. Sheryo & Yok are back!

If you think you’re stepping into a sterile art gallery, think again. Works by street artists like the dynamic duo of The Yok and Sheryo, Vince Ballentine, Damien Mitchell, Elle, Danielle Mastrion, and many more adorn the hotel’s stairwell walls, making it a truly one-of-a-kind experience. Because it’s in a stairwell, each turn offers a surprise. So even though we’ve shared some photos here, keep in mind that this is something that really should be explored in person.

Pro Tips:

The museum is free and open for self-guided tours, but you’ll need a reservation. Make yours here.

All bags must be checked in before you start the tour.

Tours are currently limited to groups of five individuals, so overcrowding shouldn’t be an issue. For group tours, you can reach out to marie@5ptz.com.

The museum spans 20 floors, but the tour starts at the top and exits into the lobby. You won’t need to spend hours on the stairclimber to prep for it, but consider that you might be in there for a while.

Just before you exit the tour, there’s a small pile of chalk near an open wall where you can leave a little (temporary) mark of your own. Have fun with it!




Pair it with:

A meal at Nakamura

Interior of Nakamura restaurant in the Lower East Side via Mad Hatters NYC Blog

Truffle Miso and seasonal Tom Yum ramen dishes with ajitama egg at Nakamura via Mad Hatters NYC Blog
Truffle Miso and seasonal Tom Yum ramen dishes with ajitama egg

At the helm of Nakamura is the eponymous Chef Shigetoshi Nakamura. Though it’s his first restaurant in the United States, Chef Nakamura’s name holds a lot of weight in Japan, where he is known as one of the “Ramen Gods”, a title given only to those making the best of the best. You really can’t go wrong here, but it’s worth noting that their options geared towards herbivores (including fully vegan options) are given the same care as those for the carnivores. Another bonus: Nakamura offers both hot and cold ramen, so you can visit any time of year.

Just remember, when you are asked if you wish to add an ajitama egg to your ramen–and you will be–the only reasonable answer is “yes”.

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Mural of Allen Ginsberg by Damien Mitchell at CitizenM's MoSA via Mad Hatters NYC blog.

– L. & J.

 

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Lauren Johnson
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I just love this! Wonderful that the community/CitizenM stepped up to fill the void that was the destruction of 5Pointz. I’ve never been to 5Pointz myself – only heard of it when watching Exit Through the Gift Shop a while ago – so I look forward to hearing more about what it was like when you guys went. This is such a great find, thank you for sharing! Also a great indoor activity for the upcoming cold months ahead 🙂

Nila
Guest
Nila

These are. great. Another great read. Thanks. Gonna check out when next over the pond

Nisha
Guest

wow! looks like a great place to explore, loved all the colorful and interesting street/wall arts !! The food at Nakamura looks inviting! Thanks for sharing .

Tara Kothari
Guest

There is a museum for everything!
Many a times I know you guys are visiting some of the same places/ doing some of the same activities we are- but this one I hadn’t even heard of! Enjoyed reading about it.
Also love how you guys put in pics from 2013.

Tip
Guest

It amazes me how you guys are able to discover these gems early in their opening. Again, superb job on your post. Your reporting makes me want to look at our remaining schedule and see if it needs to be revised. The pairing looks a tad bit more appetizing and filling than saltines, cheese and onions!

JAM
Guest

What a great find! I share your love for street art, and putting this inside a stairwell is such a creative approach. No one really loves climbing the stairs, but with wall art like this, I could become inspired! Thank you for sharing this special place.

Cynthia | Adventuring Woman
Guest

Wow, great photos of some fantastic street art! I think I really want to see this. Among so many other things. Quit telling me about all the things!

Seriously, a warm place to visit in winter, and a nearby venue for spectacular ramen? Sound like a no-brainer for my December visit. But you shouldn’t have told me about not needing the stair climber prep, that would have been good exercise 😉

Trudy
Guest

I wished that I had taken good pictures of 5Pointz before it disappeared. I love how CitizenM always takes into account the neighborhood that they are in when decorating the hotel. Great post again, guys!