New “Affordable” Artist Studios Planned for Red Hook

Affordable studio space for artists in New York seems to be a topic on everyone’s mind these days. It was most recently under discussion in Brooklyn with the Mobilizing Bushwick initiative spearheaded by artists William Powhida, Jules de Balincourt, and Lynn Sullivan along with Art F City editor Paddy Johnson. Together they assembled a proposal for artists in the area to confront gentrification by collectively buying a building to use for studio space. Now, another long-term solution to soaring rent prices, and the harsh reality that New York may fast become an impossible place for artists to live and work, could be coming to the South Brooklyn neighborhood of Redhook by way of a massive, waterfront redevelopment for artist studios.

Est4te Four, the luxury developer, has plans to turn the former New York Dock Building into affordable studio space for artists along the waterfront. Construction on the building is slated for November, with commercial space on the first two floors, a restaurant and grocery store, residential and studio spaces on the upper floors (totaling 70 units), and a rooftop pool. Est4te Four also purchased 202 Coffey Street, a red brick warehouse in the area, which it plans to repurpose as a mixed-use space with five studios and exhibition spaces and open-air courtyards.

The firm won’t just be marketing to artists; they’ll also be plugging local musicians, models, and art entrepreneurs. Massimiliano Senise, a partner at the firm, told DNAInfo “We want to mix the work of fashion, art, music.” As for how affordable the spaces will actually be, he said it was “definitely affordable.” An anonymous source told DNAInfo that units in the New York Dock Building would start around $500,000.

—Alanna Martinez

(Image courtesy DNAInfo and Nikhita Venugopal)