The Old-School Saint of Nouveau Bushwick
In the heart of America’s most achingly hip hood, a working-class Brooklynite becomes an unlikely booster of the borough’s creative class.
Photos by Aaron Adler
On June 1, a block of Troutman Street in Brooklyn was closed off for a party. A raucous band played on a stage set up in the middle of the block while customers waited in line get lunch and frozen lemonade from food trucks. Lots of people strolled about, stood in small groups and browsed staples of New York City street fairs — a stand with skincare products, another with jars of artisanal jams.
What distinguished this from an ordinary block party were the half-dozen people painting on the walls up and down the street. An artist named Fumero stood on a ladder stenciling in background figures above a portrait of a giant baby. Another, Franck Duval, painstakingly painted bricks red and yellow around a central collage of vintage magazines. A young man with the curious moniker of Jerkface put the finishing touches on a colorful mural of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Michelangelo.
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