Graphic Witness: Clinton and Rivington by Lindsay Jahnig
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Clinton and Rivington by Lindsay Jahnig

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Being white, twenty years old and female living in the lower East Side among the decades old bodegas and rich Hispanic heritage, I immediately found myself out of place. I moved to Clinton Street and Rivington in January. There is so much deliciousness to respond to from the architecture (old tenement housing) to the neighborhood family restaurants to the incoming, swanky, expensive wine and cheese bars. These snooty establishments give an interesting contrast to the age old Latino barrio, but the irony of their presence is less than palatable. I identify with these stores. I feel separated and distant from my new home: as much as I love having my first apartment, I can't help but wonder who my newly renovated building used to belong to. Soho is slowly taking over my neighborhood and in the next 5-10 years will there be any evidence of who built the streets and the impoverished people who called these streets and buildings home? In my series I am trying to show the color and spice of Clinton and Rivington while maintaining my own self imposed distance. I want to exhibit glimpses of where I live without direct reference to myself. A voyeur.

Lindsay Jahnig is a student at Parsons School of Design.