Friday, September 13, 2013

The Changing of Little Italy

The annual Feast of San Gennaro in what is left of Little Italy has begun it's 2013 season. Will it survive the gentrification of the neighborhood in years to come? An interesting blog post in Jeremiah's Vanishing New York written a few years ago explores the topic. A look at the history of this tradition and its future - or not. Here is a link.

"Mulberry Street Reflections"
Oil on canvas
12 x 9 inches

"The Feast of San Gennaro"
Oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches

Two of my paintings of the Festival and the neighborhood. My painting, "The Feast of San Gennaro" was used as the cover image for a sociology textbook, "Society Myths and Realities, An Introduction to Sociology" by Alex Thio, published in 2007 and then again when the book was reprinted. In the crowd scene depicted in the painting, there are many people portrayed, different ages and from different ethnic backgrounds. This is what New York is and has always been. But, year by year the face of the city is changing and neighborhoods are losing much of their diversity - that which made New York such a vibrant place like no other.

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