By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
"A borderline between two communities that ignore each other, Grand Street divides a Polish-Italian neighborhood from a predominantly Puerto Rican and Dominican neighborhood in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. One day, I crossed that urban frontier to discover a population of adolescents and children . . . " writes photographer Regina Monfort, of her project "Beyond Grand Street," documenting the hispanic residents of southeast Williamsburg.
Monfort has been photographing the neighborhood for over four years. "I found myself both impressed and seduced by the toughness of character with which the young people encounter the tensions ruling their streets," she recalls. "As I came to know them as individuals, I began to perceive their often well concealed fragility."
Southeast Williamsburg's six-story buildings have housed the same families for generations, but now many of its younger denizens may be forced to search elsewhere for affordable apartments: as is the case with so many of the city's urban outposts, eagle-eyed Manhattanites with fat wallets are beginning to covet this rough-edged, spirited neighborhood.
Sweetie, Keap Street, Brooklyn
Stephanie, Keap Street (Puerto Rican Day), Brooklyn
Polo, South 3rd Street, Brooklyn
Radamis "Roc" on Broadway, Brooklyn