Now that Jim “the Mosaic Man” Power has left the East Village for Brooklyn, local activists are working to ensure that his street mosaics are preserved.
Activists launched an “Empower Jim Power” web site and are organizing walking tours to raise awareness about Power’s work and to raise funds for a mosaic trail that would mark the locations of Power’s 80 or so mosaic installations in Lower Manhattan.
The tours, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 18 ,are being organized by Bob Holman, of the Bowery Poetry Club. Power, Holman, and students from Holman’s “Art and the Public Sphere” class at NYU, will be posted along the trail to explain the history of the art project and the significance behind each installation. The tours begin at Tony Rosenthal’s “Alamo” sculpture—unofficially known as the Astor Place cube.
A map will be provided so guests can walk from “exhibit” to “exhibit,” where there will be speakers describing the work and the history behind it. Jim Power himself will be there to answer questions and talk about his work and his mission. The aim of the show is not just to solicit donations to fund The Trail, but also to raise awareness of the project and get the community involved. This is a celebration of public art, of the what makes the East and West Villages/LES so distinctive.
Times have been tough for Power. The Vietnam veteran, who needs a hip replacement and was recently homeless, had a bit of a meltdown earlier this month and took a hammer to one of his creations on Astor place, The Villager reported.